Skip to main content

Full text of "Memoirs of Madame de Motteville on Anne of Austria and her court. With an introd. by C.A. Saint-Beuve. Translated by Katharine Prescott Wormeley"

See other formats





Cour ttt jFtance IStrttCon 









2Translatrt bo 


VOL. I. 



Copyright 1901, 







CHAPTER I. 1611-1630. 

Flourishing state of the kingdom at the death of Henri IV. Evil in- 
fluence of the Marechal d'Ancre. His murder. Majority of 
Louis XIII. Marriage of Philip IV. of Spain to Elisabeth of 
France, and of Louis XIII. with Anne of Austria. Toilet of the 
latter. Portrait of Louis XIII. Intrigues of the Due de Luynes. 
Vexations of Anne of Austria. Death of de Luynes. Passion 
of the Duke of Buckingham for the queen. Madame de Che- 
vreuse. Persecution of Cardinal Richelieu against Aqnfi ofAnafaria, 
and his love for her. Her hatred and contempt for him. His 
policy. The queen's fear of being repudiated. Madame de 
Motteville sent away from the queen. Portrait of the queen at 
that time. portraits of the most remarkable women at Court . . 25 

CHAPTER II. 1630-1643. 

Hatred of Marie de' Medici against Cardinal Kichelieu. The " Day of 
the Dupes " and its consequences. Arrest of Marie de' Medici at 
Compiegne, and her escape to Flanders. Mademoi">Ufi dp TTunt.*- 
fort. Slavery of Louis XIII. to Cardinal Richelieu. His melan- 
choly life at Saint-Germain. Anne of Austria neglected. Incli- 
nation of the king for Mademoiselle de La Fayette ; she becomes 
a nun; singular and affecting romance. Birth of Louis XIV., 
Septembers, 1638. Reconciliation of king and queen. D_eath 
oLCardinal Richelieu, December 4, 1642. His portrait. The^ 
courtiers cluster round Anne of Austria. The king opens the 
prisons and allows the exiles to return. Makes Cardinal Mazarin 
his minister. Louis XIII. in the last days of his life. Declara- 
tion to his council on the regency . Anne of Austria swears to 
observe it. Details on death of Louis XIII., May 14, 1643. His 
portrait 47 


CHAPTER m. 1643-1644. 


Regency of Anne of Austria. Arrival of queen with the young king 
in Paris. Goes to parliament with the king and the princes of the 
blood. Speech of the chancellor, Seguier. The Due d'Orleans 
and the Prince de CoadiL accept the regency unreservedly. Dis- 
missal of Chavigny. The Duchesse d'Aiguillon allowed to keep the 
government of Havre. Dissatisfaction of the Prince de Marsillac. 

Mazarin prime minister. The queen persuaded to confide in 
him. TJie^pju^d'EnghienJthe^Great^ Conde)_wins the battle of 
Rocroj. Mazarin's policy cleverly beneficent. He persuades the 
queen to protect the relatives and friends of Richelieu. His grow- 
ing favour with the queen. Intrigues of the Vendome cabal. 
The Duchesse de Montbazon. Affair of a letter attributed to 
Madame de Longueville. The queen grants them justice for the 
outrage of Madame de Montbazon. dismissal of the latter from 
Court. The Due de Beaufort ; accused of intending to murder 
Mazarin. His dismissal and imprisonment. Exile of " the Im- 
portants." Unkind dismissal of the Bishop of Beauvais. 
Madame de Chevreuse irritates the queen, and is relegated to Tours. 

She leaves France. Madame de Hautefort: her hatred to Car- 
dinal Mazarin. TT p r itppro^A"^ d' e rnissrv1, ^nd repair .... 70 

CHAPTER IV. 1644-1645. 

The council of conscience. Saint Vincent de Paul. Cpjmpletepowgr^. 
of riarHinaj J^[^^jj^_- H,fc JUifllMincP...^.. the, flueen's mind. 
Cnanges in the civil service. Private lifejrf tha qpepn; tastes, 
feelings, character, and disposition of her mind at forty years of 
age. The Due d'Orleans commands the army of Flanders ; the 
Due d'Enghien that of Germany. First agitation in parliament. 
President Barillon sent to Pignerol. The parliament goes to the 
Palais-Royal to remonstrate. The queen refuses to receive them. 

Stay of the Court at Rnel. Voiture's impromptu verses. 
Henri III.'s opinion of Paris. Death of Pope Urbain VIII. 
Arrival of Queen Henrietta of England, wife of Charles I., in 
consequence of the English revolution. Sorrows and sufferings 
of that princess. Affectionate reception of her by Anne of Austria. 

Death of Elisabeth of France, Queen of Spain ; her portrait ; 
regrets at her death. Squabbles for precedence between Mademoi- 
selle and the Princesse de Conde' and Duchesse d'Enghien. 
Anger of the queen against Mademoiselle. Arrival of the Queen 

of England in Paris ; her portrait ............ 102 


CHAPTER V. 1645-1646. 


The battle of Nordlingen won by the Due d'Enghien. Emotion 
"caused by the losses there made. JNObie worSsofthe cardinal on 
that occasion. The queen and the young king go to parliament in 
state. Beauty and fine presence of the queen at this ceremony. 
Grace of the king when addressing the assembly. Bold harangue 
of the advocate-general, Omer Talon. Impression it made on the 
mind of the queen. Mademoiselle de Rohan marries Chabot 
against the opposition of her family. Marriage of the King of 
Poland to Priucesse Marie of Mantua. Brilliant Polish embassy 
on this occasion. Portrait of the new Queen of Poland. Her 
disappointment on arriving at Warsaw. Portrait of the king, her 
husband ; his brutal reception of her 124 

CHAPTER VI. 1646-1647. 

Conduct of the queen towards her servants ; treats them well, but does 
not concern herself about their interests. Education of Louis XTV. - 

The queen gives the management of it to Cardinal Mazarin. 
Dismissal of Mademoiselle de Beaumont exacted by the cardinal. 
Madame de Motteville is threatened with the loss of her position. 

The queen reassures her. Interview between Madame de Motte- 
ville and the cardinaLon this subject. Ambition and policy of the 
Due d'Enghien. Prudent policy of the Prince and Princesse de 
Conde. Amusements of the Court at Eontainebleau. War in 
Flanders ; the taking of Courtray ; the siege of Mardick. Loss of 
life. The queen's remark on. the. Due d'Enghien (the Great 
Conde). The Due d'Orleans quits the army, and leaves the com- 
mand to the Due d'Enghien [September, 1646]. Embassy from 
the Queen of Sweden received at Fontainebleau. Portrait of that 
queen. Military successes. Death and portrait of Bassompierre. 

Intrigues and ambition of the Due d'Enghien. Death of the 
Prince de Conde, December 26, 1646. Portrait of that prince . . 144 


Anne^of Austria's taste for the theatre. The rector of Saint-Germain 
speaks against this amusement. Seven doctors of the Sorbonne 
condemn it, ten tolerate it. Peace between Holland and Spain. 

Decided by the greed of the Princess of Orange. ThejGreat 
Cftude and his petit-maitres. Cardinal Mazarin gives a fete to the 
Court. Ball at Court ; description of the ball. Dress and appear- 
ance of Louis XIV., aged eight, at this ball. Toilets of other 



personages. Shabby supper given by Cardinal Mazarin to the 
queen's women. Departure of the Prince de Coude for Catalonia. 
His portrait. Death of the 1'riuce of Orange The King of 
England betrayed by the Scotch. Quarrels about grace. Molin- 
ists and Jausenists ; the blame which the latter deserve. Anne of 
Austria supports the Jesuits. Journey of the Due and Dnchesse 
d'Orleans to Bourbon. Singular character of the duchess ; her 
portrait. Portrait of the Due d'Orle'ans. Devotions of Anne of 
Austria at the Val-de-Grace. Return to Paris of Madame de 
Longueville. She occupies almost the entire attention of the 
Court. Her intimacy with the Prince de Marsillac. Her por- 
trait. Reasons of the queen's coldness to her. Capacity and 
activity of Cardinal Mazariu. His defects 168 

CHAPTER Vni. 1647. 

Desires for peace. Mazarin suspected of not wishing it. Murmurs in 
Paris at the conduct of the war. Many of the malcontents exiled. 

Short stay of the Court at Dieppe ; attachment of the inhabitants 
to the king's person. Return of the Court to Paris. Illness of 
the Due d'Anjou, the little Monsieur. Portrait of that young 
prince. Opposition of the parliament to a tax on provisions. 
Conference at the Palais-Royal on this subject. The tax is Toted. 
Arrival at the Court of the Mancini. Their portraits. Courtier- 
ship of the Comte de Nogent. His wife presents the Mancini chil- 
dren to the queen. The Mazarin family little thought of in Rome. 
Harshness of the queen to the Dnchesse de Schomberg. Depart- 
ure of the queen for Fontaiuebleau. Ill-will ofCardigaL.Mazarin 
to.Jladame^de^M^tteville. Thejjneen_ comforts her. Upright- 
ness of Anne of Austria. Her piety embarrasses the cardinal. 

Evil consequences of her weakness towards the minister. Abil- 
ity of the cardinal. The Prince of Wales, son of Charles I., visits 
the king and queen at Fontainebleau. Stiffness of the prince and 
Louis XIV. when together. Return of the Court to Paris. The 
king falls ill with small-pox, November, 1647. Peril of the king; 
a g n y f the queen. Characteristics of the young monarch. 
His recovery. Delicate behaviour of the Prince de Conde. The 
queen seized with fever, but recovers quickly. Her feelings during 
her illness. She spends Christmas at the Val-de-Grace. The 
king's recovery brings back the ladies who had fled the Court. 
The little king's reproaches to them. Bad disposition of all minds 

at the close of the year 1647 194 


CHAPTER IX. 1648. 


The Court. Anne of Austria's indolence. Uprising of the merchants 
of Paris against a tax. Mutiny of the masters of petitions. Coun- 
cil in the queen's room oh this occasion. The burghers hecome 
excited. Failure of attempt of women to address the queen. Dis- 
play of troops in Paris. The king goes to Notre Dame; also to 
parliament. Vigorous speech of Omer Talon. The courtiers de- 
stroy its effect on the queen. Bitterness of the public mind. Pen- 
ury of the Court. The masters of petitions resent an edict. 
Parliament receives their complaint. Displeasure of the queen. 
The Due d'Orleans and the Prince de Conde support the queen. 
The Court during the holidays. Murmurs against Mazarin. 
The Dutch make peace with Spain. Delay and resistance of par- 
liament. The queen goes to Chartres. Arrest of Saujeon. 
Mademoiselle reprimanded. Madame_de Motteville helps to 
reconcile her with^ej^ath^r^^ r jQoJd,..tratmeiit of her by the .. 
queen 21E 

CHAPTER X. 1648. 

Difficulties with parliament. The paulette. Decree of union of all 
the supreme courts with parliament. Indignation of the queen. 
Methodical resistance of parliament. Determination to raise an 
opposition to Mazarin. The Duke of York escapes from England 
and comes to France. Parliament forbidden to meet. Exile of 
members and of the courts. Escape of the Due de Beaufort. 
The queen consoled, but Mazarin uneasy at the escape. The queen 
visits the queen of England. The jubilee. Conversation of the 
queen in the garden of the Palais-Royal. Assembling of parlia- 
ment against the will of the queen. Speech of President de 
Mesmes. The queen complains. The cardinal tries gentleness 
with the grand council and the cour des aides. The queen walks in 
the Holy Sacrament. She releases from prison a spy on President 
de Mesmes. Five treasurers of France imprisoned. Parliament 
deliberates on king's order, annulling its decree of union with the 
other courts. Meets with the deputies of the other courts in the 
Chamber of Saint-Louis. Parliament summoned to the Palais- 
Royal June 16. Another decree of the king in council. Resist- 
ance of parliament. Speech of Omer Talon. The queen disposed 
to severity. The cardinal's concessions. They diminish the royal 
authority. Death of the King of Poland. Audacity of parlia- 
ment increases. Depression of the cardinal. Propositions of 



parliament and the other courts. Conference proposed by Due 
d'Orleans. Advances of the cardinal to parliament. D'fimery, 
superintendent of finances, dismissed. The Marechal de Meille- 
raye appointed in his place .............. 242 

CHAPTER XI. 1648. 

Impoverished condition of the Court and kingdom. Conference of 
ministers and parliament. Shameful proposal as to loans. 
Good-will of parliament to the Due d'Orle'ans. Bitter distress of 
the queen. Blames the cardinal. The latter alarmed at the state 
'i of things. Poverty of the Queen of England. The king yields 

everything to parliament. Reflections on the right of remon- 
strance. General revolt of the parliaments. The Prince de 
K CojidsLjJOjafiS-iQ -Paris. Annoyance of the Due d'Orleans at his 
return. The prince returns to the army. Taking of Tortosa by 
Marechal Schomberg. Fresh remonstrances of parliament. The 
queen resolves to endure no more. Goes to parliament. Declara- 
tion of the king. Appearance of the young king. Coolness of 
the people towards him. Mazarines system of moderation. The 
discussion in parliament becomes factious. ^The.^Duc, d'Orleans 
moderates it. Anger of the provinces against the minister and the 
queen, The queen upholds the minister, and why. Her Charity 
and good works. Allowed by the minister to want for money. 
The king and cardinal go to vespers at the Feuillants. Bloody 
quarrel between the king's Guards and the guards of the grand 
provost. The result. Honourable conduct of Charost and Chan- 
denier. Dismissal of all the captains of the Guard. Continuation 
of the struggle between the Court and parliament. The battle 
of Lens .................. ... 280 


The Te Deum at Notre Dame. Arrest of Broussel, Blancmesnil, and 
Charton, Riot and barricades in Paris. The insurgents respect 
the coadjutor [de Retz]. Confidence of the queen. She refuses 
the release of Bronssel. Ajarnuof. Madame .daJdoitfiYalle.. The 
chief president compelled by populace to ask for Broussel's release. 
The queen refuses it. Danger run by Chancellor Seguier. 
Condition of the streets of Paris. Vigorous firmness of the queen 
in receiving parliament. The populace compels parliament to go 
a third time to the queen and demand Broussel. Firm answer of 
the queen. The members consult at the Palais-Royal. Mazarin 
makes them a weak and halting speech, which is ridiculed. Prom- 



ise of transient obedience. Broussel is released. Humiliation of 
the queen. Regret of honest Frenchmen., Discipline of the 
burgher army. Uprising of the people. An anxious night. 
Personal feac^.a.d,prccautic)iis of the cardinal. Broussel received 
in triumph. The burghers refuse to lower the barricades unless by 
order of parliament. Parliament gives the order. A small inci- 
dent raises them once more. Anxiety of the queen. She orders 
the Guards to their quarters, which does not quiet the populace. 
Terrible alarm at night. Threat of the burghers to seize the king. 
Courage and firmness of the queen. Her fine woHJs. TO ^wjard-_ 
ice of Mazariu. The excitement of the people quiets down . . . 313 

at^(i*Sf1*3*' t iy'**i- l ^*r^, J -- v i'-i-:- 1 - ;:-"'..',,-..'! "--. ' .-^-'' .-. ; .-Vit >-.'* :"-* 


Quiet in Paris. Dissatisfaction of the coadjutor. Secret ambition of 
the Due d'Orleans. The queen begins to distrust him. Thinks of 
turning for help to Prince de Conde. Illness of the Due d'Anjou, 
the little Monsieur. Parliament renews its persecutions. The 
queen thanks the burghers for guarding the city. Yields to the 
new demands of parliament. Conciliatory policy of the minister. 

Prince de Conde' wounded at Fumes. The Court retires to 
Ruel. The queen's good judgment and courage. The Prince de 
Conde desires to return to Paris to support the king and queen. 
The queen consents. Speculative minds suggest the blockade of 
Paris. Exile of Chateauneuf and arrest of Chavigny. Fidelity 
of Commander de Jars to his friend. Fontrailles escapes imprison- 
ment by flight. Parliament demands the return of the king to 
Paris and the dismissal of the minister. Return of the Prince de 
Condd Queen's speech at Ruel to a deputation from parliament. 

She refuses their demands and the princes support her. Re- 
moval of the little Monsieur from Paris. The Court goes to 
Saint-Germain. The king issues a decree forbidding parliament 
to assemble. Alarm in Paris. Letters of the Due d'Orle'ans and 
the Prince de Conde to parliament proposing a conference. Par- 
liament stipulates that Mazarin shall be excluded from it. 
Speeches of the princes of the blood sustaining the authority of the 
king. Demands of parliament. Concessions of the queen. 
Both parties only half satisfied. The Duchesse de Vendome in- 
vokes the protection of parliament against Mazarin 338 

INDEX . 369 




By Largilliere ; Portraits Nationaux. 


Drawing by Rubens ; Vienna. 


By Philippe de Champaigne ; Louvre. 


This portrait was made on her arrival in France to be married 
to Louis XIII. By Franz Porbus ; Maltres Anciens. 


By Van Dyck ; Dresden. 


From a contemporary print by Peter Aubry. 


By Pierre Mignard ; Chantilly. 






LET us repose awhile with. Madame de Motteville, the 
writer of these judicious Memoirs, with that wise and 
reasonable mind which saw very closely the things of her 
day, and estimated and described them in such perfect pro- 
portion and with an accuracy so agreeable. When the 
Memoirs of Madame de Motteville appeared for the first 
time, in 1723, the journalists and critics of that day, while 
praising their tone of sincerity, deemed that they gave too 
many minute details, too many little facts. This was the 
opinion of not only the " Journal de TreVoux " and the " Jour- 
nal des Savants," but it was that of Voltaire himself. We 
no longer think so. These little facts, belonging to an old 
and vanished society which they represent to us with abso- 
lute truth, please us and fasten our attention: at a short 
distance they might seem superabundant and superfluous; 
at a greater distance they become both new and interesting. 
And besides, while Madame de Motteville, keeping to her 
woman's r6le and telling nothing that she does not know of 
her own knowledge, never attempts to penetrate cabinet 
secrets (though she divines some of them very well indeed), 
she pictures to the life the general spirit of all situations and 
the moral character of the personages. It is this lasting side 
that time has more clearly brought forth, placing her hence- 
forth in a rank both distinguished and well-established. 

Madame de Motteville, born about 1621, her maiden name 
being Franchise Bertaut, was the niece of a bishop-poet, 

TOL. I. 1 


illustrious in his day and still remarkable for sentiment and 
elegance; the same Bertaut whom Boileau praised for his 
reserve, and Eonsard judged to be "too virtuous a poet." 
I remark at once on this basis of virtue, which seems to 
have been inherent in the race. Madame de Motteville had 
a younger sister who was called from her infancy Socratine, 
on account of her austerity, which ended by making her a 
Carmelite. This austerity, much softened and adorned in 
the elder sister, deserved in her the name of reason and 
good sense ; and it was thus that those who knew her only 
by reputation spoke of her. " Melise may pass for one of 
the most sensible preeieuses of the island of Delos," says the 
" Grand Dictionnaire des Preeieuses." 

Mademoiselle Bertaut had received a very careful and 
very literary education. Her father, Pierre Bertaut, was 
gentleman-in-ordinary of the king's bed-chamber. Her 
mother, who came of a noble family in Spain and had 
lived her youth in that country, was noticed by Anne of 
Austria in the early days after the queen's arrival in France. 
Knowing Spanish as her own language, she was employed 
by the queen for her family correspondence and treated as 
a friend. She profited by this favour to give, as they said 
in those days, meaning to attach to the queen's service, her 
daughter, then seven years old (1628). But Cardinal Eiche- 
lieu, always uneasy about the queen's surroundings and 
anxious to cut off her communications with Spain, removed 
the little girl, an act to which Anne of Austria strongly 
objected. To all her complaints " they answered," so Madame 
de Motteville tells us, "that my mother was half Spanish, 
that she had much intelligence, that already I spoke Spanish 
and might resemble her." Madame Bertaut accordingly 
took her daughter, now ten years old, to Normandy, where 
she completed her education with care. The young girl 


still received an annual payment of six hundred limes from 
the queen, and in 1639 she was thought worthy, for her 
beauty and good reputation, to be married to M. Langlois de 
Motteville, president of the Chamber of Accounts of Nor- 
mandy, who made her his third wife. "This was an ill- 
assorted marriage," says the " Journal de Savants " (January, 
1724); "the president was eighty years old, and the wife 
only eighteen. It is said that she wearied of her half of 
the bed, so that sometimes after the goodman went to sleep 
she made her waiting-maid take her place, and the old man 
never found it out." If this detail, stated by a grave journal, 
is correct, it was the liveliest piece of giddiness of Madame 
de Motteville's life. Her nature, calm and unimpassioned, 
seems never to have suffered from such a marriage. " In the 
year 1$39, having married M. de Motteville," she says, "I 
found much comfort, with an abundance of everything ; and 
if I had been willing to profit by the friendship he had for 
me and receive the advantages he could and would have 
given me, I should have been rich after his death." But she 
neglected these views of self-interest, and, like all others 
exiled from Court, she thought only of the hope held out by 
the coming death of the cardinal, at which time she expected 
her return to favour. On the death of the cardinal and that 
of the king, one of the queen's first acts was to recall all 
those who had been dismissed on account of their love for 
her, and Madame de Motteville was among them. She was 
henceforth attached to the queen, less as woman-in-waiting 
(which was her title) than as one of the persons of her daily 
intercourse and intimacy. Wise, discreet, and punctual, of 
a gentle but playful mind, a curiosity both serious and 
readily amused, with an observing eye that did not seek to 
be piercing or to look deep, but contented itself with seeing 
clearly that which went on about her, she spent twenty-two 


very varied years, some of which, were shaken by violent 
storms. Faithful and devoted, without pretending to be 
heroic, she was able to reconcile the timidities of her sex 
with the obligations and duties of her position, and pass at 
Court through the breakers of many reefs, visible and invis- 
ible, without being turned from her way, continuing always 
within the rules and delicacies of scrupulous integrity 
woman in many points, but the most reasonable of women, 
a genuine person, yet at the same time amiable. She seems 
never to have thought of remarrying, and never to have 
known a tender weakness. In that agreeable discussion 
which she holds by letter with La Grande Mademoiselle on 
the conditions of a perfectly happy life she says: "I was 
only twenty years old when I regained my liberty, which 
has always seemed to me preferable to all the other good 
things that the world esteems ; and by the way I have used 
it I seem to be a fit inhabitant of the village of Kandan," 
a village in Auvergne where the widows do not marry again. 
The title of dowager, which she gained so young, did not 
terrify her. She enjoyed friendship and conversation; but 
she could also enjoy, if need were, " the sweets of solitude, 
which are books and revery." A true and practical religion, 
which did not exclude but on the contrary brought her back 
to philosophical reflection, sustained and strengthened her 
in virtue and prudence. It was thus that this soul, equable 
and temperate, passed through life, without great lustre, 
without inward distresses, and constantly ripening, 

We at once ask ourselves, as we do of all women, whether 
Madame de Motteville was beautiful, and it appears that 
she was. " Her portrait, which is at Motteville," says the 
"Journal des Savants," "represents her as a very pretty 
brunette." The only engraved portrait which I have seen 
of her, and which every one may see at the Cabinet des 


Estampes, shows her to us with her hair dressed in the 
fashion of Anne of Austria, no longer in her first youth, 
the face full, with a double chin, and a gentle, tranquil ex- 
pression. The lower part of the face, however, is scarcely 
agreeable, and the whole together has nothing that claims 
marked attention. It is in her mind that we must seek for 
the delicate and charming traits that distinguished her. 

The principal figure around whom Madame de Motte- 
ville's narrative unfolds itself is that of the queen, Anne of 
Austria, her mistress. The author does not pique herself on 
being either a politician or an historian ; she is a woman who 
relates that which she has seen with her own eyes or learned 
from the best-informed persons. Very sensible and very 
safe as she was, the most honourable men among the initi- 
ated and the talented (such as de Eetz calls the Estre*es 
and the Senneterres) liked to talk with her. She was usu- 
ally in the cabinet, that is to say, the royal withdrawing- 
room; she makes it her centre, and dwells more willingly 
on the scenes there presented to her observation. Never- 
theless, she does not neglect, as occasion offers, more ex- 
tended narratives, such, for instance, as the episode on the 
English Eevolution, which she gathered from the lips of the 
Queen of England herself and made into a separate narra- 
tive. She also enlarges on the revolution in Naples, which 
took place about the same time. " This is a fragment which 
I let drop as I go my way," she says of one of these chance 
episodes: "it will find its place with others of the same 
nature; and as it will not be treated with more order or 
connection it will also not have more value." The sound 
judgment of Madame de Motteville, which led her to con- 
sult as to these remote matters none but good witnesses and 
also made those most worthy of confidence like to speak of 
them openly with her, gives to these accessory parts and 


to these hors-cFceuvres more interest than she ventures to 

She begins by an abridged narrative of the queen's life 
from her arrival in France to the death of Louis XIII. and 
the Regency. But the original part of these Memoirs is 
that which starts from the latter period and treats only of 
what passed within sight of the writer. When she returns 
to Court in 1643 Madame de Motteville describes to us the 
different personages on the stage, the divers cabal interests ; 
she shows herself to us in the midst of those great intrigues 
as a simple spectator seated in a corner of the best box and 
perfectly disinterested. " I thought only of amusing myself 
with what I saw, as at a fine comedy played before my eyes 
in which I had no interest." "Kings' cabinets," she says 
elsewhere, " are theatres in which are being played continu- 
ally the pieces that all the world is thinking about: some 
are simply comic; others are tragic, the greatest events of 
which are caused by trifles." Present at all these things 
with a clear-sighted mind and a spirit never bitter, and at 
first taking interest in them merely to escape tedium, she 
had, very early, a resource that came to her from her family 
that of writing ; the moments that other women took for 
cards or promenades, she spent in locking herself in and 
making notes of all she had seen and heard, to be used at 
a later day. 

The first period of the regency of Anne of Austria is ex- 
hibited and clearly shown by Madame de Motteville in a 
manner that makes us present with her. All the old friends 
of the queen have returned, after an exile more or less long ; 
each of them expects the same favour as before, and they do 
not at first perceive that the Anne of Austria whom they 
had left oppressed by Richelieu, without children, and 
Spanish at heart, was now a mother, devoted to the in- 


terests of the young king, and a queen wholly French. 
Neither do they perceive that her heart is already won by 
Mazarin, and that she has chosen him, from affection and 
laziness, as the minister who is to release her from business 
and make her reign. Madame de Senece*, Madame de Che- 
vreuse, Madame de Hautefort on returning to Court have 
therefore much to learn, much to divine. Many of these 
exiles of other days no sooner think they have again grasped 
Fortune than they provoke to their own detriment her ca- 
price and inconstancy. " Here, then, is the Court, very grand 
and beautiful, but much embroiled," says Madame de Motte- 
ville, who cannot help enjoying the spectacle. "Each is 
thinking of his own designs, his own interest and cabaL 
The cardinal, of a suave, shrewd mind, goes about working 
to win to himself all parties." But a goodly number, feel- 
ing sure of their ground, resisted all his advances. Madame 
de Motteville shows us, in this interior view, the unexpected 
reverses from which resulted new downfalls for the presump- 
tuous and for those who played the " Important." Apropos 
of Madame de Hautefort, whose firmness without gentleness 
and " mind attached to her senses " harshly resist the queen, 
Madame de Motteville lets us see the whole of her own 
court morality, a temperate but not relaxed morality. " We 
may give our advice to our masters and our friends," she 
thinks, "but if they are determined not to follow it we 
ought to enter into their inclinations rather than follow our 
own, when we do not see essential evil in them and when 
the things themselves are not important." 

The quality of Cardinal Mazarin's cleverness, his dissimu- 
lation, the grace and delicacy of his play, that cabinet spirit 
in which he excelled and which " set going so many great 
engines" are rendered with fidelity and to the life by a 
person who, without reason herself to speak well of him, 


has the merit of appreciating equitably his superior points. 
Many of those whom Mazarin dismissed were friends of 
Madame de Motteville; she does not abandon them when 
they fall; she visits, consoles, and even tries in some cases 
to defend them to the queen. By this sincerity of action 
she does herself harm with the minister ; but the queen has 
enough elevation of heart to forgive her all such proofs of in- 
tegrity and, after a first coolness, to bear no resentment to her. 

If Ann P. of Austria were more interesting than she appears 
to us in history, we might adopt from Madame de Motteville 
the various portraits she has made of her which are full of 
noble beauty and majesty. The waiting-woman (for here 
Madame de Motteville is somewhat that) shows us her royal 
mistress with admiration and love from the moment she 
wakes and rises and is given her chemise to that of her 
supper and coucher. Her widow's mourning became the 
queen, and she lost something by quitting it. She was at 
that time forty years old, " an age so dreadful for our sex," 
says Madame de Motteville ; but she triumphed over it by 
a stately appearance as sovereign and mother. 

All the portraits given by Madame de Motteville are fine 
and made almost without intention. In the troubles which 
soon arose she shows us qualities in the queen which it 
would be unjust to refuse her amid her faults; she had 
courage and pride; "the blood of Charles V. gave her a 
lofty dignity," and boiled in her veins. To such descrip- 
tions of Anne of Austria, a little partial but not false, we 
must always add, and hear, the " sharp little voice " she had 
when angry, the tone of which Retz has so well conveyed. 

The Queen of England, magnificently lauded by Bossuet, 
is pictured more familiarly by Madame de Motteville, who 
knew her well; and this time it is she who gives to that 
figure, solemnized in the funeral oration, the touch of reality. 


On the occasion of the arrival of a Swedish ambassador 
(September, 1646), Madame de Motteville shows us the first 
idea received in France of Queen Christina, and, while 
making herself the echo of that extraordinary eulogy, she 
adds a touch of light and gentle irony, as sometimes happens 
with her. " Fame," she says, is a great talker, she is fond 
of passing the limits of truth ; but truth has much force ; it 
does not long leave a credulous world in the hands of de- 
ception. Some time, later, it was known that the virtues 
of this queen were middling; she had no respect for 
Christians; and if she practised morality it was more from 
fancy than feeling." 

Thus speaking, Madame de Motteville, who is always 
essentially a woman, gently avenges her sex, outraged some- 
what by the brusque and fantastic manners of that eccentric 

"Fame a great talker" reminds me of one of the graces 
of Madame de Motteville's style; a simple style, rather 
incorrect in its arrangement of sentences, retouched perhaps 
in various places by the editor, but excellent and wholly her 
own in the essentials of language and expression. She has 
many of those pleasing metaphors which brighten the tex- 
ture. Wishing, for example, to say that kings never see 
evils and danger until at the last extremity, because they are 
hidden from them by a thousand clouds, "Truth," she re- 
marks, "which poets and painters represent naked, is always 
dressed up in a hundred ways before kings ; and never did 
a worldly woman so often change her fashions as truth 
when she enters a royal palace." Apropos of the cardinal's 
hat promised for years to the Abbe" de la Eiviere, MONSIEUK'S 
favourite, and suddenly claimed by the Prince de Conde* for 
his brother the Prince de Conti, she says that "Discord 
has flung a crimson apple into the cabinet." Pointing to 


Mazarin, so adroit in turning to account the very excesses 
of hatred and accusation, in neutralizing and making his 
own profit from them, she says : " Cardinal Mazarin does 
with insults what Mithridates did with poisons, which in- 
stead of killing him came at last by constant usage to nour- 
ish him. The minister, in like manner, seems by his adroit- 
ness to make good use of public maledictions; he employs 
them in getting credit with the queen for suffering in her 
defence." We feel in these passages, and in the whole 
current of Madame de Motteville's style, a natural and 
poetic imagination, without much sparkle, but such as be- 
came the niece of the amiable poet Bertaut. In certain 
places we find some wealth of imagery in " flowers," " roses," 
" thorns," some trace of the bad taste of the Louis XIII. 
period ; but these are only here and there ; her natural good 
sense usually reigns in her language as it does in her judg- 
ment and thought. 

Madame de Motteville is a contemporary of Corneille, and 
has a little of the tone of the romances of that period in 
her language. Speaking of Cinq-Mars, she calls him " that 
amiable criminal ; " in relating the downfall of those whom 
fortune deserted she is touched by "so many illustrious 
unfortunates;" though still young she slightly regrets the 
olden time. Speaking of the old Mare'chal de Bassompierre, 
whom the young men laughed at, she says, after praising his 
generosity, his magnificence, and his courteous manners : 
"The relics of the old mare'chal are worth more than the 
youth of some of the most polished men of these times" 
(1646). In Corneille's plays she liked especially the lofty 
morality and the noble sentiments which had purified the 
stage. When Italian comedy was introduced under Maza- 
rin's auspices she took but little pleasure in those musical 
plays. " Persons who understand them esteem them highly," 


she says; "as for me, I find that the length of the play 
diminishes the pleasure, and I think that verses, repeated 
naturally, represent conversation more easily and touch the 
mind better than song delights the ear." All this shows 
a right mind and a noble heart, rather than a nature inclined 
to tenderness or passion. Italian comedy, played before the 
cardinal, excited the enthusiasm of certain courtiers, such 
as the Mardchal de Grammont and the Due de Mortemart, 
who seemed enchanted by the very names of the minor 
actors, and "all together, in order to please the minister, 
uttered such great exaggerations when they spoke of them 
that Italian comedy became wearisome to persons who were 
moderate in speech." Madame de Motteville was one of 
those moderate persons, and she gives us in those words 
the tone of her own soul. Thus, when I say she was by 
taste somewhat a contemporary of Corneille, the reader 
sees in what sense it must be understood, and how she 
corrected all exaggeration of it. 

Though she likes to recall and repeat the following gallant 
lines of her uncle, 

" And constantly to love rare beauty 
Is the sweetest error of earth's vanities, " 

her heart was more fitted for friendship than for love ; she 
was made, in all ways, for correct and regulated sentiments, 
for happy equanimity, and she expresses a desire for them 
more than once. From her beautiful Normandy she had 
gained a love of nature and of country life ; but she could 
not enjoy it on a hasty journey. "The country," she says, 
"is beautiful with repose and solitude only when we can 
taste the innocent pleasure that the beauty of Nature affords 
us in woods and on the shores of rivers." She says else- 
where, speaking of kings : " I think those happy who know 


them only through the respect due to their name, who can 
enjoy the quiet, tranquil life of a good citizen with means, 
who have enough to live on and are not poisoned by ambi- 
tion. That is where all reasonable souls should seek for true 
happiness, obscure, it is true, but tranquil and innocent." 
This desire for private life reappears in her frequently, with 
a tone of sincerity that cannot be misunderstood. 

She likes, in these Memoirs of hers, to moralize, to 
give serious reflections which she enforces by agreeable 
quotations; she is fond of citing Spanish or Italian poets, 
sometimes Seneca, but oftener Holy Scripture. These reflec- 
tions have been thought too long and too frequent, which 
may be true of the latter part of the Memoirs; but as a 
general thing she knows how to mingle them with the cir- 
cumstances that inspired them. In certain very fine pages 
on the character, schemes, and talents of Cardinal Mazarin 
she shows him to us (during a stay he made in Paris, 
May, 1647) as shutting himself up to work, and leaving the 
greatest men in the kingdom waiting in his antechamber 
unable to reach him. Murmurs resounded on all sides; 
but the door opened, the minister came out, and all were 
silent : 

" When he got into his coach to go away, the courtyard 
of the Palais-Royal was filled with cordons bleus, great sei- 
gneurs, and persons of that quality, who, by their eager 
manner, seemed only too happy to have looked at him 
solely from a distance. All men are by nature slaves to 
fortune ; and I can say that I never knew a person at Court 
who was not a flatterer, some more, some less. The self- 
interest that blinds us misleads and betrays us on occasions 
which concern ourselves ; it makes us act with more senti- 
ment than intelligence ; quite often it happens that we are 
ashamed of our weaknesses; but they are not perceived 


except through wise reflection, which we all owe to our- 
selves, but which does not come until the occasion to do 
better has passed." 

She knows what the grand airs of independence assumed 
by those whom favour rebuffs too often signify ; she under- 
stands the showy pride which melts at the first advance and 
turns to meanness. Mazarin, who cannot use her, as he 
wished, for a creature of his own beside the queen, cavils 
at her, makes her sometimes uneasy, and keeps her on the 
qui vive : that is his system when he is not sure of people. 

" As he did not know my intentions, and judged me by 
the opinion he held of the universal corruption of the world, 
he could not keep himself from suspecting that I was mixed 
up in many things contrary to his interests. He told me 
one day that he was convinced of this because I never told 
him anything of others; I listened to the malcontents, 
and must therefore be in their confidence." 

And, in truth, more than one malcontent was not afraid 
to confide in Madame de Motteville, even where there was 
no intimacy, and they spoke to her " as to a person who had 
the reputation of knowing how to hold her tongue." This 
was precisely what displeased Mazarin and made him com- 
plain of her. " That reproach," she adds, " shows his natu- 
ral distrust and how unfortunate we were in living under the 
power of a man who loved double-dealing and with whom 
integrity had so little value that he thought it a crime." 
These complaints of the cardinal, which did not fail to 
transpire, she endeavoured to offset by certain kind words 
of the queen which counteracted the impression before 
others; "for at Court," she remarks, "it is easy to dazzle 
spectators ; we must never give them the pleasure of know- 
ing we are not as fortunate as they imagine, or as unfortu- 
nate as they desire." 


In all her remarks on the Court, that "delightful and 
wicked place" which was often justly hated, but "always 
naturally loved," I fancy as I read Madame de Motteville 
that I am listening to Nicole, but a feminine Nicole, soft- 
ened and more agreeable. 

Nevertheless, we meet with many very fine expressions 
of vigour and moral energy. At a ball given by Cardinal 
Mazarin during the carnival of 1647 she describes to us, 
one after another, the principal beauties and queens of the 
festival; after which she makes the supernumeraries defile 
before us, and they are by no means the least pretentious 
or the least noisy. "The queen's maids-of-honour, Pons, 
Guerchy, and Saint-Me'grin, tried to make a few natural 
conquests by the pains they took to embellish themselves 
in all sorts of ways ; happy if, among so many lovers, they 
could have caught husbands suited to their ambition and 
the license of their desires." That is only a piquant stroke ; 
but presently, speaking more particularly of Mademoiselle 
de Pons, beloved by the Due de Guise, now on his way to 
conquer Naples for her sake, and yet, for all that, not con- 
tent or satisfied with such a prize, she says: "That soul, 
gluttonous of pleasure, was not content with an absent lover 
who adored her and a hero who, to deserve her, sought to 
make himself a sovereign. Ambition and love combined did 
not have charms enough to fill her heart ; to satisfy her she 
must needs go promenading on the Cours, where she received 
the incense of all her new conquests." A soul gluttonous of 
pleasure ! it is a sense of honest decency which here conveys 
to Madame de Motteville's style that expression of disgust. 

Her habitual tones are much more restrained; acrimony 
does not touch her decent pen. Near as they are to the 
queen, she and her companions are deprived by the avarice 
of the cardinal of many of the practical and efficacious 


results of favour, but she confines herself to jesting about it 
with light and smiling irony. There is nothing in these 
Memoirs of Madame de Motteville that recalls those other 
Memoirs, so distinguished but so bitter, of Madame de Staal- 
Delaunay, lady-in-waiting to the Duchesse du Maine; the 
situation however was very different. Madame de Motte- 
ville was in a great and real Court, beside a queen who, 
with a mind of ordinary compass (though accommodating 
and agreeable), had a noble and generous heart and paid for 
services with esteem. If one must find an historical paren- 
tage for Madame de Motteville, I find it more in the Memoirs 
of the wise chamberlain Philippe de Commines, whom she 
likes to quote, recalling at times the results of his sound 
and judicious experience. 

Her own Memoirs become more serious and take a loftier 
historical character the farther they advance into the period 
of civil agitations and the troubles of the Fronde. Madame 
de Motteville judged them rightly, and while ascribing to 
herself only the role of a timid woman, she makes reflec- 
tions which one could wish had been made at the time by 
many men. The long conversations in private which she 
had with the Queen of England had enlightened her as to 
the real tendency of perils which often, in their beginning, 
seem no more than a gust. Noting with vigorous justice 
the illusion of the Parliament people, and their insatiable ex- 
actions which caused them to reject all preliminary offers of 
compromise and conciliation, she boldly declares that " the 
corruption of men is such that to make them live according 
to reason they must not be treated reasonably, and to make 
them just they must be treated unjustly." She points to 
men of property who, by obstinately shouting against taxa- 
tion and those who abused it, were aiding turbulence and 
lending support to malcontents, which often happened. 


" Men of property, without considering that an evil is some- 
times necessary, and that, in this respect, all the ages have 
been about equal, hoped through disorder to attain to some 
better order; and that word reformation not only pleased 
them as a good principle, but it also suited those who 
courted evil through the excess of their folly and ambition." 
There are moments when all things concur for disorder and 
ruin, and when sedition is in the very air. " The star," says 
Madame de Motteville, "was at that time terrible against 

The first scenes of the Fronde are related by her in a 
manner that does not pale before even the narrative of Car- 
dinal de Retz. The latter gives us the scene in the rue du 
Palais-Eoyal when he enters it, and of the ulterior of the 
archbishop's palace. Madame de Motteville shows us the 
interior of the queen's cabinet, where she finds herself, at 
first, the only person who is seriously alarmed. The first 
day of the Barricades was almost wholly spent in joking 
her. " As I was the least valiant of the company, all the 
shame of that day fell upon me." 

For a person belonging to that interior she comprehends 
very clearly and at once the nature of the revolt in the town, 
and the disorder so quickly and so well organized. "The 
bourgeois," she says, " who had taken arms very willingly to 
save the city from pillage, were no better than the populace, 
and demanded Broussel as heartily as the scavengers; for, 
besides being infected with a love of the public welfare, 
which they reckoned to be theirs personally, . . . they were 
filled with joy in thinking themselves necessary to some- 
thing." These words, " infected with a love of the public 
welfare," have often been quoted ; but we should see in them 
only a simple little jest of Madame de Motteville ; she knew 
what she was saying in speaking thus and in characterizing 


as disease and pestilence the false love which, had seized 
that seditious populace for a moment. 

Madame de Motteville is not a blind royalist ; she believes 
in the right of kings, but also in the justice which is its law, 
and which God, she thinks, often inspires in kings, and has 
done so almost always in this kingdom of France. Her 
ideal of a monarch is Charles V. On the day when Parliament 
relied on I forget which ordinance of Louis XII. to demand 
that "no one shall be put in prison without being brought 
twenty-four hours later before his native judges," she cannot 
help remarking that this article guaranteeing individual 
security, as we should say, " was agreeable to all France. 
The love of liberty," she adds, " is strongly imprinted in 
nature. The wisest minds, which, until then, had disap- 
proved of the doings of this Assembly, could not in their 
hearts, hate this proposition; they blamed it apparently, 
because it was impossible to praise it before the world, but 
in point of fact they liked it and could not help respect- 
ing such boldness and wishing it success." We see that 
Madame de Motteville would have made a fairly liberal 
royalist ; but this woman of intelligence and good sense, who 
was present at such terrible scenes, and relates them, is 
never the dupe of grand words nor of appearances; she 
mingles with them observations such as do honour to his- 
torians and are not disavowed by politicians. " When sub- 
jects revolt," she says, " they are pushed into it by causes of 
which they are ignorant, and, as a usual thing, what they de- 
mand is not what is needed to pacify them" She points out 
to us these very magistrates (the parliament), who had been 
the first to stir up the people, amazed to find it turning 
against them and not respecting them. " They knew them- 
selves to be the cause of these disorders, but they could not 
have remedied them had they wished to do so, for when the 

VOL. I. 2 


people meddle with ordering there is no longer any master ; 
each man for himself endeavours to be one." We may look 
at home to-day, and ask ourselves if this is not still our 

But I remind myself that I chose the subject of Madame 
de Motteville in order to distract my mind for a moment 
mine and my reader's if possible from the painful specta- 
cle of our present dissensions [Dec. 1, 1851], and I do not 
wish to fall back to them by allusions which they supply 
but too freely. 

Madame de Motteville ran some danger in Paris during 
the first Fronde. Not being able in the early days of 1649 
to follow the fugitive queen to Saint-Germain, and wishing 
to rejoin her soon after, she was arrested, with her sister, at 
the Porte Saint-Honore* by a furious mob, and was forced to 
take refuge on the steps of the high altar at Saint-Roch, 
where some of her friends, hastily summoned, came to her 
rescue. She joined the queen a little later and quitted her 
again at certain times; for this distinguished woman was 
not, as she tells us humbly, an amazon or a heroine ; it was 
with difficulty that she rose above the terrors or even the 
inconveniences of her sex. Present or absent, however, her 
fidelity never failed. When peace was re-established, she 
resumed beside the queen the habits of her regular, gentle, 
serious life, which suited her so well. Her virtue, her deli- 
cate integrity in that world of treachery and ambush, ex- 
posed her, even to the last, to certain cavillings, over which 
her prudence and calmness, supported by the esteem of the 
queen-mother, enabled her to triumph. Religion took deeper 
and deeper hold on a soul made to welcome it and natu- 
rally ordained to it. This enlightened and submissive reli- 
gion has dictated to her in these Memoirs certain pages, 
which are as charming as they are solid and sensible, on 


the quarrels of the period, the disputes of Jansenism and 
Molinism, in which women were as eager as others to mingle. 
" It costs us so dear," she says, alluding to Eve, " for having 
sought to learn the knowledge of good and evil, that we 
ought to agree that it is better to be ignorant of it than to 
know it; especially as we women are accused of being the 
cause of all evil. . . . Whenever men talk of God and the 
hidden mysteries I am astonished at their boldness, and I 
am delighted not to be obliged to know more than my Pater, 
my Credo, and the Commandments." Madame de Motteville 
follows exactly the line that Bossuet traced in such matters. 
This whole page should be read ; the author crowns it with 
very noble Italian verses, which prove that while submitting 
her mind she by no means renounced a reasonable self- 
adornment and embellishment. This rare person, this hon- 
est woman of so much judgment and intelligence, died in 
December, 1689, in her sixty-eighth year. She can be appre- 
ciated at her full value only by accompanying her through- 
out the whole course of her Memoirs, following her in her 
development and continuity; quotations and analysis give 
but a very imperfect idea of their slow, full, tranquil, and 
engaging character. 



THESE Memoirs are somewhat abridged; chiefly in the 
parts relating to matters that did not come under Madame 
de Motteville's personal observation ; such, for instance, as 
the period before she became the daily companion of Anne 
of Austria, the military details of the wars of the Fronde, 


KINGS are not only exposed to the eyes but to the judg- 
ment of all the world ; very often their actions are good or 
bad according only to the different sentiments of those who 
judge them by their passions. They have the misfortune 
to be censured with severity for things about which they 
might be blamed, but no one has the kindness to defend 
them for other things which might justly obtain some ex- 
cuse. All who approach them praise them in their presence 
through base self-interest, in order to please them ; but each 
man, with sham virtue, joins in judging them severely when 
absent. Moreover, their intentions and their sentiments 
being unknown and their actions public, it often happens 
that, without wronging equity, they may be accused of faults 
which they never intended to commit, but of which they are 
nevertheless guilty, because they have been deceived, either 
by themselves, for want of knowledge, or by their ministers, 
who, slaves to ambition, never tell them the truth. 

It is this that has led me to write in my leisure hours, and 
for my amusement, what I know of the life, habits, and 
inclinations of Queen Anne of Austria, and to repay, by the 
simple recital of what I recognize in her, the honour she did 
me in giving me her familiarity. For, though I do not pre- 
tend to be able to praise her in all things, and, in accordance 
with my natural disposition, I am not capable of disguise, 
I am, nevertheless, very sure that historians who have not 
known her virtues and her kindness, and who will speak of 
her only in accordance with the satirical talk of the public, 


can never do her the justice that I would fain be able 
to do her if my incapacity and my want of eloquence did 
not take from me the means of doing it. 

Therefore, what I now undertake is not with any fixed 
design of correcting their ignorance or their malice; that 
project would be too great for a lazy woman, and too bold 
for a person like me who dreads to show herself and would 
be unwilling to be thought an author. But I do it for my 
own satisfaction, out of gratitude to the queen, and to re- 
view once more (if I live), as in a picture, all that has come 
to my knowledge concerning the things of a Court, which 
is certainly very limited, for I do not like intrigue. But I 
shall add nothing. That which I put upon paper I have seen 
and I have heard, and during the whole Eegency (which is 
the period of my attendance on the princess), I have written, 
without order, from time to time, and sometimes daily, what 
seemed to me most remarkable. In doing this I employed 
the time that ladies are accustomed to give to cards and 
promenades, because of the hatred I have always felt to the 
useless life of the people of the great world. I do not know 
if I have done better than others ; but at least I know well 
that, to my thinking, one cannot do worse than to do 





1611 1630. 

KING Louis XIII. was but nine years and eight days old 
when he came to the crown; but King Henri IV. had left 
him a kingdom so peaceful and flourishing, with such good 
troops in his armies, such able ministers in his councils, and 
such large sums in his coffers, that if the queen, Marie de' 
Medici, had been willing to follow the system established 
by that great prince in the State, her regency would have 
been far more glorious and the rest of her life much happier. 
But, having allowed the Marquis d'Ancre, whom she made 
marshal of France, to take too great authority, he advised 
her to dismiss the servitors of the late king, and particu- 
larly those great men who had grown old in the highest 
offices and managed the most important negotiations, to put 
in their place others who were wholly dependent upon her. 

This drew upon her the hatred of all the princes of the 
blood, and of the other princes and great seigneurs, whom 
she treated with such haughtiness that they retired from 
Court; and the treaties of Sainte-Me'nehould and Loudun, 
which the marshal had made, having no effect, the number 
of malcontents increasing daily, he resolved, in order to break 


up the measures he saw were preparing against him, to arrest 
the Prince de Conde", who, as first prince of the blood, would 
probably be the leader of the party now beginning to form 
itself. At the same time he sent orders to the two armies 
intended to act outside the kingdom, in execution of the 
great designs of the king who had raised them, to hold 
themselves ready to sustain the royal authority confided to 
him [the Mar^chal d'Ancre] in case it was attacked in con- 
sequence of the arrest of the prince. He also raised a third 
army, to be ready to march more promptly against the first 
malcontents who ventured to declare themselves. 

So bold an action as this and such great preparations con- 
firmed the queen in the high opinion she had of him whose 
advice she blindly followed, and made her believe she would 
soon be mistress of the Court and of all France without op- 
position. It was this that ruined her, as well as the man 
she had chosen for her first minister. For, as she was per- 
suaded that none could resist her, she imagined she had no 
need to treat any one with caution, not even the king her 
son ; and she took no heed that he too had a favourite with 
as much ambition as her own, who, insinuating himself daily 
more and more, worked so strongly to detach the king from 
the tenderness he had for his mother that in the end he 
made him resolve to part from her altogether. This favour- 
ite was de Luynes, who, during the time he was the young 
prince's page, had found means to make himself so agreeable 
and so necessary to all his pleasures, exercises, and amuse- 
ments, particularly those of all kinds of hunting where few 
persons liked to follow him, that the freedom in which he 
lived with the king raised him at last to the dignity of 

The French nobles, naturally attached to the princes of 
the blood, having taken up arms in the provinces, were daily 


swelling the party of the Prince de Cond^, while disorder 
reigned in Paris, where the populace pillaged the house of 
the Mare'chal d'Ancre, against whom they made loud out- 
cries as the author of the violent manner of the queen's 
governing, and the bad employment, robbery, and squander- 
ing of the treasure amassed by Henri IV. Eiots became 
daily more frequent, and no one having the force or the 
desire to quell them, the populace at last attacked the mar- 
shal as he was leaving the Louvre, April 24, 1617, the 
bravi who everywhere accompanied him, giving him no 
succour, nor the guards either (who were not far off when 
he drew his sword intending to defend himself), for they 
thought that the Marquis de Vitry, their captain, who ap- 
peared at that moment, was coming to his rescue. Instead 
of that, he came to arrest him, so that it remained doubtful 
whether his death was due to the fury of the people, or to 
his own resistance to the king's orders. 

Since his majority the king had manifested on so many 
occasions his intention of taking cognizance of public mat- 
ters that, the queen having now retired to Blois, he was not 
long in recalling the chancellor, de Sillery, and in setting 
the Prince de Conde* at liberty. This was not enough to 
really pacificate the kingdom which all these changes had 
disturbed. But as I have not undertaken to describe the 
life of that unhappy princess, I shall not speak of the war 
undertaken by those who took her side. My purpose is 
only to note what may concern Queen Anne of Austria, who 
began to be spoken of during the subsequent negotiations 
for a general peace which her marriage was to give to all 

I shall therefore merely say here that the Grand-duke of 
Tuscany, being naturally obliged to act towards maintaining 
Queen Marie de' Medici's former influence with the king 


(who, though attaining his majority, was still willing to 
share his authority with her), and having great interest in 
the tranquillity of France, which could not be shaken without 
Italy and Spain being disturbed, directed the Marquis Borri, 
his ambassador, to be the first hi the conferences held 
with the Spanish ministers at Madrid to suggest a double 
marriage between the two princes and the two princesses of 
France and Spain. 

The result was that the Due du Maine went to Spain 
and the Due de Pastrana came to France. The espousals 
of Philip IV., son of Philip III., King of Spain with 
Madame Fjlisabeth of France [daughter of Henri IV.] were 
solemnized at Burgos, and those of King Louis XIII. with 
Anne of Austria, Infanta of Spain, at Bordeaux in 1615. The 
Due de Guise, who had conducted Madame FJisabeth to 
the middle of the little river of Bidassoa, which separates the 
two kingdoms, took leave of her to let her pass on to Fonta- 
rabia, while he himself conducted the Infanta of Spain to 
Saint-Jean de Luz, where the Due de Luynes gave her a 
letter from the king, to which, it is said, he brought back an 
answer in her own handwriting. It was supposed that the 
army of the Huguenots would oppose her journey, and it is 
true that it was so near to that of the king that it seemed 
to flank it; but this only served to make them see his 
strength, and to render the entry of the Infanta into France 
the more imposing. 

I know from my late mother, who had henceforth the 
honour to approach the princess familiarly (though she was 
not her servant), that she was handsome and very amiable. 
I have heard my mother say that the first time she saw her 
she was seated on cushions, according to the Spanish custom, 
among her ladies, of whom she had a great number, dressed 
in the Spanish fashion in a gown of green satin, embroidered 


in silver and gold, with large hanging sleeves, fastened with 
great diamonds serving as buttons, on the arms ; she wore 
also a closed ruff and a little cap upon her head of the 
same colour as her dress, in which was a heron's feather 
which enhanced by its blackness the beauty of her hair, 
which at that time was very handsome and worn in large 

The young king was also very handsome and very well 
made, and his dark beauty did not displease our young queen. 
She thought him very agreeable from the beginning; and 
though he stuttered, and the fatigues of hunting, his long ill- 
nesses, and his natural gloom changed him infinitely towards 
the end of his life, I still believe, from the way in which 
I have heard the queen speak of him, that she would have 
loved him much if the misfortune of both, and that fatality 
which seems inevitable for all princes, had not disposed 
otherwise; for the king, making for himself a grievous 
destiny, did not love the queen as much as she deserved. 
He spent his life in hunting beasts and allowed himself to 
be governed by favourites; so much so that he and the 
queen lived together with little intercourse or happiness. 

All the Spanish ladies who came with our young queen 
were soon taken from her, which caused her great pain. 
Only one remained, named Donna Estefania, whom she 
loved tenderly because she had brought her up, and was, as 
we say in France, her first bed-chamber woman. My late 
mother, who had lived many years in Spain (whither she 
had been taken at six years of age by her grandmother, the 
second wife of the Sieur Saldagna, who had no children, to 
obtain an inheritance of which she had promised her the 
chief share), was a great comfort to Donna Estefania in the 
first years of her life in France, during which she took no 
pleasure except in things that reminded her of Spain. 


My mother formed at the outset a great friendship with 
this lady, who, beginning to feel infirm, needed to lay her 
cares on some faithful person who not only spoke Spanish 
but could also read and write it, and who knew the Spanish 
Court ; and the queen herself, finding all these requisites in 
my mother with much intelligence and charm, made no 
difficulty in placing confidence in her, not only for the inno- 
cent, though secret, correspondence which she maintained 
with her brother, the King of Spain, but also to console her- 
self with her for the grief she could not disguise at the 
great favour of the Due de Luynes, who had the audacity, 
so it was said, to propose to the king to repudiate her and 
marry a relation of his wife, afterwards the Princesse de 
Gue'mene'e, whom we knew as the handsomest woman of the 

But if this thought ever came into his mind, it could only 
have remained there a moment as an absurd vision; for 
the Duchesse de Luynes, who was on very good terms with 
her husband, was not long without being liked by the queen, 
who, although in the beginning she could not endure her on 
account of her own aversion to the duke, did accustom her- 
self to her for the sake of the good terms she was thus en- 
abled to have with the king, who liked the duchess, and for 
the hunting and riding parties she was now invited to join. 

Thus she did enjoy certain periods of pleasure without 
other bitterness than that of becoming pregnant several times, 
as she believed, and miscarrying for having ridden too hard 
in hunting. From which we may judge that if her Court 
lacked prudence it was not without enjoyment, since youth 
and beauty had sovereign rights there. 

The Due de Luynes having died in 1621, his little em- 
pire ended with him; and Queen Marie de' Medici, being 
reconciled to the king, the peace between mother and son 


destroyed that between husband and wife; for the queen- 
mother, being convinced that, to hold control over the young 
prince, the young princess must not be on good terms with 
him, intrigued with such perseverance and success in creat- 
ing misunderstandings be'tween them that from that day 
forth the queen, her daughter-in-law, had neither influence 
nor comfort. All her consolation was the part which the 
Duchesse de Luynes, now remarried with the Due de Che- 
vreuse, a prince of the house of Lorraine, took in her sorrows, 
which she tried to soften by the amusements she proposed 
and by communicating to her, as much as she could, her 
own gay and lively humour, which turned the most serious 
things of the greatest consequence into matters for jest and 
laughter a giovinc cuor tutto e giuoco. 

Some years went by without my being able to explain 
how they were passed, knowing nothing but what the 
queen herself told me later, amusing herself sometimes by 
relating stories of them. I can say, however, that she was 
loved, and that, in spite of the respect which her majesty 
inspired, her beauty did not fail to touch certain men who 
openly showed their passion. 

The Duke of Buckingham was the only one who dared 
to attack her heart. He came, on the part of the King of 
England, his master, to marry by proxy Madame, the king's 
sister. He was well-made, handsome in face; he had a 
lofty soul, was magnificent, liberal, and a favourite of his 
king, so that he had his wealth to spend, and all the crown 
jewels to adorn him. It is not astonishing that with such 
amiable advantages he had high thoughts and noble but 
dangerous and blamable desires, or that he had the happi- 
ness to make the beautiful queen admit that if a virtuous 
woman could love another than her husband, he would have 
been the only one who could have pleased her. The praises 


that I give him I heard from the queen herself, for he was 
the person in the world of whom I have heard her say the 
most good. It is, no doubt, to be presumed that his regard 
was not unwelcome, and that his vows were received with 
a certain amount of complacency. The queen, making no 
secret of it, had no difficulty in telling me later (wholly 
undeceived then about such dangerous illusions) that, being 
young, she did not comprehend that fine conversation, other- 
wise called polite gallantry, in which no pledges were given, 
could be blamable any more than that which Spanish ladies 
practise in the palace, where, living like nuns and speaking 
to men only in presence of the King and Queen of Spam, 
they nevertheless boast of their conquests and talk of them 
as a thing which, far from injuring their reputation, adds 
to it. She had in the Duchesse de Chevreuse a friend who 
was wholly given up to these vain amusements; and the 
queen, by her counsels, had not avoided, in spite of the 
purity of her soul, taking pleasure in the charms of that 
passion which she accepted with a certain complacency, for 
it flattered her glory more than it shocked her virtue. 

Much has been said of a walk she took in the garden 
of a house where she lodged when she went to conduct the 
Queen of England to Amiens. But this was most unjust, 
for I know from herself, who did me the honour to confide 
it to me without reserve, that she only wished to walk in 
that garden because the king had forbidden every one to 
enter it, and, as difficulty increases desire, this gave her a 
very strong wish to go there ; so that, after getting the keys 
with much trouble from the captain of the guard, she walked 
there one evening with Madame de Chevreuse and her little 
Court. The walk was taken in presence of her whole suite, 
which accompanied the princess as usual. I have seen per- 
sons who were present and who told me the truth. The 



Duke of Buckingham was there and wanted to talk with 
her. Putange, the queen's equerry, left her for a few mo- 
ments, thinking that respect required him not to listen to 
what the English lord was- saying to her. Chance led them 
to a turn of the path where a palisade hid them from view. 
The queen, at that moment, surprised to find herself alone, 
and apparently startled by some too passionate sentiment 
from the Duke of Buckingham, cried out, and calling to 
her equerry, blamed him for leaving her. 

By that cry she showed her wisdom and her virtue, pre- 
ferring the preservation of her inward innocence to the fear 
she must have had of being blamed ; for that cry, reported 
to the king, would certainly cause her much embarrassment. 
If on this occasion she showed that her heart could be sus- 
ceptible of a tenderness that invited her to listen to the 
romantic speech of a man who loved her, it must at the 
same time be admitted that a love of purity and her virtu- 
ous feelings surmounted all the rest, and that she preferred 
a real and true credit, unmixed by any sentiment unworthy 
of her, to a reputation suspected, after all, of little. 

When the duke took leave of the queen-mother, who had 
also come to conduct her daughter, the Queen of England, 
beyond Amiens, the queen did me the honour to tell me 
that when he came to kiss her gown, she being in the front 
of the coach with the Princesse de Conti beside her, he 
screened himself with the curtain to say a few words to 
her and to wipe the tears that were falling from his eyes. 
The Princesse de Conti, who laughed at goodness, and was, 
as I have heard say, very witty, said as to this, speaking of 
the queen, that she could assure the king of her virtue; 
but she could not say as much for her cruelty, because no 
doubt the tears of this lover, which she had seen (being 
seated beside the queen), must have touched her heart, and 

VOL. I. 3 


she suspected that her eyes at least looked at him with 
some pity. 

The Duke of Buckingham's passion led him to do an- 
other very bold action, about which the queen informed me 
and the Queen of England afterwards confirmed to me, 
having heard it from himself. This celebrated foreigner, 
after starting from Amiens to return to England, conduct- 
ing Madame Henriette de France to her king and to reign 
over the English, being full of his passion and goaded by 
the pain of absence, wanted to see the queen again, if only 
for a moment. Though they had almost reached Calais, he 
made a plan to satisfy his desire by feigning to receive news 
from the king his master which obliged him to go to the 
French Court. 

Leaving the future queen of England at Boulogne, he 
returned to see the queen-mother and negotiate this pre- 
tended affair, which was only a pretext for returning to 
Court. After discussing his chimerical negotiation, he went 
to the queen, whom he found in bed and almost alone. 
This princess knew by letters from the Duchesse de Che- 
vreuse, who was accompanying the Queen of England, that 
he had returned. ' She spoke of it before Nogent, laughing, 
and was not astonished when she saw him. But she was 
surprised when, with much freedom, he threw himself on 
his knees before the bed and kissed her sheet with trans- 
ports so excessive that it was easy to see his passion was 
violent, and one of those which deprive such as are touched 
by them of their reason. The queen did me the honour 
to tell me she was embarrassed; and this embarrassment 
mingled with vexation caused her to remain for some time 
without speaking. The Comtesse de Lannoi, then her lady- 
of-honour, wise, virtuous, and elderly, who was beside her 
pillow, not willing to allow the duke to remain in such a 


state, told him with much severity that it was not the 
custom in France and that she wished him to rise. But 
he, not abashed, argued with the old lady, saying that he 
was not a Frenchman and was not bound to observe all 
the laws of that State. Then, addressing the queen, he said 
the most tender things in the world to her. But she only 
answered with complaints of his boldness, and, without 
perhaps being very angry, ordered him to rise and leave 
the room. He did so ; and after seeing her again the next 
day in presence of all the Court, he departed, fully resolved 
to return to France as soon as possible. 

After the English ambassador had crossed the sea, the 
two queens returned to the king who awaited them at Fon- 
tainebleau. All these things relating to Buckingham were 
told to him to the disadvantage of the queen, so much so, 
that several of her servants were dismissed. Putange, her 
equerry, was exiled ; Datal, La Porte, and the queen's doctor 
were treated in the same way. 

The Queen of England told me afterwards that in the 
beginning of her marriage she had some distaste to the king, 
her husband, and that Buckingham fomented it, telling her 
freely that he would set them against each other if he could. 
He succeeded so far that, from a feeling of vexation, she 
wanted to return to France to see her mother; and as she 
knew the passionate desire the English duke had to see the 
queen again, she spoke to him of her design. He entered 
into it with ardour, and powerfully helped her to obtain the 
permission of the king, her husband. The princess, knowing 
this, wrote to the queen-mother asking her to think it well 
that she should bring the Duke of Buckingham with her, 
because without him she could not make the journey. She 
was refused both by the queen her mother, and the king her 
brother ; and her project, in consequence of this desire of the 


duke, could not take effect. This need not astonish us ; the 
rumour of his sentiments was an invincible obstacle. As 
the king had some tendency to jealousy, the queen-mother 
giving him as much as she could to disgust him with the 
queen (served in this by Cardinal Eichelieu, whom she had 
brought into public affairs), the Duke of Buckingham could 
never afterwards obtain permission to return to France. 

This man, who, from all descriptions given to me, had as 
much vanity as ambition, embroiled the two crowns in order 
to get back to France by the necessity of a treaty of peace, 
after he had, as he intended, made a great reputation by 
the victories he expected to win over our nation. On this 
basis he brought a powerful naval force to the help of the 
Eochelle people then besieged by King Louis XIII., show- 
ing publicly the passion he had for the queen and making a 
glory of it. But this ostentation was punished at last by 
no success, and the shame of having ill succeeded in all his 

Madame de Chevreuse, who followed vehemently all her 
inclinations and loved the Duke of Holland, a friend of the 
Duke of Buckingham, having now returned from England, 
saw with some satisfaction the arrival of Buckingham's fleet 
and his return to France with what at first appeared to be 
a high reputation. She did not cease to talk of it to the 
queen. The mistress and favourite both hated Cardinal 
Eichelieu because he was the creature of the king and the 
queen-mother, who had put him in the ministry. They 
found nothing more agreeable than to annoy him, all the 
more because the queen was persuaded that he did her ill 
service with the king. She made therefore no difficulty in 
listening with pleasure to the wishes Madame de Chevreuse 
expressed for the success of the English. She often told 
me this herself, wondering at the error, into which the 


gayety and folly of innocent youth, which did not yet know 
the full extent to which virtue, reason, and justice bound it, 
had led her. 

The Duchesse de Chevreuse'was no doubt the cause of this 
blindness, which was not in reality as criminal as it seemed, 
because the intentions and sentiments of the soul are what 
make good or evil in us. But in the days when the queen 
became more enlightened she regretted it. Madame de 
Chevreuse told me afterwards, in relating the follies of her 
youth, that she had forced the queen to think of Buckingham 
by always talking of him and removing what scruples she 
had by dwelling on the annoyance thus given to Cardinal 
de Eichelieu. I have also heard her say, with much assev- 
eration on this point, that it was true that the queen had a 
noble soul and a very pure heart ; and that, in spite of the 
clime in which she was born, where, as I have said, the 
name of having a lover is the fashion, she had had all 
the trouble in the world to make the queen take a liking to 
the fame of being loved. 

The queen herself spoke of these things with so free and 
honest a simplicity that it was easy to see she had never 
had in herself other than slight imperfections. Indeed, 
they served to make her know in later days what she owed 
to God for having maintained her in true purity, when 
vanity made her swerve from the maxims so virtuous a 
princess wished and was bound to observe. Her misfortune 
was in not being loved enough by the king her husband, and 
in being as it were forced to amuse her heart elsewhere 
by giving it to ladies who made a bad use of it, and who, 
during her first years, instead of leading her to seek occa- 
sions to please the king, and to desire to be esteemed by 
him, estranged her from him as much as they possibly could 
in order to possess her more completely. 


It is believed that Cardinal de Eiclielieu had in reality 
more love for the queen than hatred, and that, seeing she 
was not inclined to wish him well, he did, either for revenge 
or from the necessity of thus using her, do her harm with 
the king. The first signs of his affection were the persecu- 
tions he inflicted on her. They were visible to the eyes of 
all ; and we shall see that this new manner of loving lasted 
till the end of the cardinal's life. There is no apparent 
ground for thinking that this passion, so vaunted by poets, 
caused the strange effects they asserted in his soul. But the 
queen related to me that one day he spoke to her in too 
gallant a manner for an enemy, and made her a very passion- 
ate speech, which she was about to answer with anger and 
contempt, but the king entering the room at that moment, 
his presence interrupted her reply; and since that instant, 
she had never dared to return to the cardinal's harangue, 
fearing to do him too much favour by showing that she 
remembered it. But she answered him tacitly by the hatred 
she always had for him and by the steady refusal she gave 
to his friendship and his assistance with the king. Those 
who had the most influence with her and who did not like 
the cardinal did not fail, in order to draw her to their party, 
to strengthen her aversion. That aversion won her many 
adherents, for Cardinal Richelieu was hated; but by this 
conduct, though it was just fundamentally, she placed her- 
self much worse with the king; we can judge from her 
sentiments and those of the minister whether there was 
reason for it. 

The queen and many private persons who had felt the 
harsh effects of this minister's cruel principles had cause 
to hate him ; but, besides the fact that he was beloved by 
friends because he esteemed them much, envy certainly was 
the sole cause for the public hatred, because in truth he did 


not deserve it ; for, in spite of his defects and the justifiable 
dislike of the queen, it must be said of him that he was the 
greatest man of our time, and that past ages had none 
who could surpass him. He had the principles of illustrious 
tyrants; he ruled his designs, his thoughts, his resolutions 
by reasons of State and the public good, which he considered 
only so far as this said public good enhanced the authority of 
the king and swelled his treasury. He wished to make him 
reign over his peoples and to reign himself over his king. 
The life and death of men touched him only according to 
the interests of his grandeur and fortune, on which he 
thought those of the State depended wholly. 

Under this pretence of preserving the one by the other 
he made no difficulty in sacrificing all things to his private 
preservation ; and though he wrote " The Life of the Chris- 
tian," he was very far indeed from gospel principles. His 
enemies were the worse for his not following those principles, 
but France profited ; like those fortunate children who enjoy 
here below a prosperity for which their fathers toiled, pro- 
curing for themselves perhaps eternal woe. 

Not that I wish to make an evil judgment of that great 
man; it must be owned that he enlarged the borders of 
France, and by the taking of La Rochelle diminished the 
power of heresy, which was still considerable in all the 
provinces where the remains of the old war kept it alive. 
His great vigilance in discovering cabals that were formed 
at Court, and his speed in smothering them, enabled him 
to maintain the kingdom. He was, moreover, the first 
favourite who had the courage to lessen the power of princes 
and grandees, so damaging to that of our kings, and in 
the desire perhaps to govern alone to destroy whatever 
was opposed to royal authority, defeating those who tried 
by ill-offices to remove him from royal favour. 


The queen was amiable, the king inclined to piety, and 
if the policy of the minister had not put obstacles in the 
way of their union it is very likely that Louis XIII. would 
have attached himself to the friendship of the person in the 
world most capable of it from the sweetness of her nature, 
and most worthy of it for her goodness and beauty. Some 
have said that the king never had any inclination for her, 
and the queen herself believed this, because she judged by 
the indifference he showed to her; but I know from one 
of the king's favourites, 1 inferior in power to Richelieu, but 
who, nevertheless, had enough share in the king's inclina- 
tions to know all such private matters, that he thought her 
beautiful, and one day, making him a confidence in respect 
to her beauty, he said that he dared not show her tenderness 
lest he should displease the queen his mother and the 
cardinal, whose counsel and services were more important to 
him than to live pleasantly with his wife. 

The enemies of the queen, the better to succeed in making 
the king hate her, used against her strongly the intercourse 
she kept up with Spain. The slightest mark of affection , 
that she gave her brother the King of Spain, they magnified j 
into crime against her husband. She had some reason to-J 
fear being repudiated, and for all consolation, she hoped, 
after the death of her aunt, the Infanta Isabella-Clara- 
Eugenia, to be sent to govern the Low Countries, whither 
my late mother, who always passed for a Spaniard on 
account of her name, Luisa de Saldagna, which she had 
borne in Spain, was resolved to take me. The inheritance 
from the Dame Du Fai and that from my late uncle the 
Bishop of Se*ez not proving as good as they imagined, the 
pension of six hundred livres which the queen had given 

1 On the margin of the manuscript is written "Due de Saint-Simon." 
This was the father of the author of the Memoirs. 


me since 1622, when I was only seven years old, and the 
brevet she gave me in 1627, which bound me, indispen- 
sably, to follow her fortunes, were very welcome, but they 
gave occasion to Cardinal Kichelieu, who knew that the 
queen had great confidence in my mother, and who saw that 
she was beginning to take pleasure in conversing with me 
in Spanish, to make the king send me an order to retire 
from Court. The queen could not refrain from complaining 
that they took from her even a child, for I was then only 
nine or ten years old. My late mother, seeing that the 
matter concerned her as much or more than it did me, 
took me to Normandy; but the queen paid my mother, 
when she could, the pension she had given me. 

In the year 1639, having married Monsieur de Motteville, 
president of the Chamber of Accounts of Normandy, who 
had no children and much property, I found comfort with 
an abundance of all things ; and if I had chosen to profit by 
the friendship he had for me and receive the advantages he 
could and would have given me, I should have found myself 
rich at his death. But, being wholly occupied by the hope 
that every one had in those days of the approaching death 
of Cardinal Richelieu, which would give us the opportunity 
to return to Court, I was very glad to make a journey there 
in the same year (1639), believing that, being married and 
settled in Normandy, my presence could no longer give 
anxiety to Cardinal Richelieu. I went, therefore, without 
any scruple to pay my duty to the queen, who received me 
very well and gave me letters as one of her ladies, with a 
brevet of two thousand livres pension; and the late Mon- 
sieur de Motteville, as well as my father and mother, 
having died shortly after Cardinal Richelieu, I prepared to 
establish myself with my sister in Paris, where my brother 
was finishing his studies. The order the queen gave me 


was far more agreeable than the one which obliged me to 
quit her. She received us with much kindness, and said 
the same day to one of my mother's friends that the children 
of her friend had come back, and she was very glad to see 

Having thus returned to the Court, which I had left so 
young, I tried to recall in my memory the state in which it 
then was, to compare it with that in which I now found 
! it. I do not know if the regency gave a grander and more 
majestic air to the queen than that she had when unfor- 
tunate, but she seemed to me more amiable than formerly, 
and as beautiful as any of those who formed her circle. 

At the time when I was sent away she wore her hair in 
the fashion of a round coiffure, transparently frizzed, and 
with much powder ; after that she took to curls. Her hair 
had grown rather darker in colour, and she had a great 
quantity of it. Her features were not delicate ; having even 
the defect of too thick a nose, and she wore, in Spanish 
fashion, too much rouge ; but she was fair, and never was 
there a finer skin than hers. Her eyes were perfectly 
beautiful; gentleness and majesty united in them; their 
colour, mingled with green, made her glance the more vivid 
and full of all the charms that Nature gave them. Her 
mouth was small and rosy, the smile admirable, and the lips 
had only enough of the Austrian family to make them more 
beautiful than many that claimed to be more perfect. The 
shape of her face was handsome and the forehead well- 
made. Her hands and arms were of surpassing beauty, and 
all Europe has heard their praises ; their whiteness, without 
exaggeration, equalled that of snow; poets could not say 
enough when they wished to laud them. Her bust was 
very fine, without being quite perfect. She was tall, and her 
bearing lofty but not haughty. She had great charms in 


the expression of her face, and her beauty imprinted in the 
hearts of those who saw her a tenderness which did not 
lack the accompaniment of veneration and respect. Besides 
these perfections, she had the piety of her mother, Queen 
Marguerite of Austria, dead in the odour of sanctity, who, 
having had the care of her daughter's education, had im- 
printed in her heart the sentiments that filled her own ; 
this it was that produced in her that great inclination to 
virtue which drew to her the grace, that God gave her 
throughout her life, to prefer it to all things else. 

The Court was at this time full of beautiful women. 
Among the princesses, she who was the first of them was 
also the first in beauty [the Princesse de Conde*]. Without 
youth, she still excited the admiration of all who saw 
her. Her gift of beauty she shared with Mademoiselle de 
Bourbon, her daughter, who was beginning, though still 
young to reveal the first charms of that angelic face which 
later was to have such fame, a fame followed by griev- 
ous events and salutary sufferings. 

I leave the Cardinal Bentivoglio, who has published in his 
writings the praises of Madame la Princesse, to tell of her 
adventures and of the passion King Henri IV. had for her ; 
I desire only to bear witness that her beauty was still great 
when in my childhood I lived at Court, and that it lasted to 
the end of her life. We praised it during the regency of 
the queen, when she was over fifty, and praised it without 
flattery. She was fair and white, her eyes blue and per- 
fectly beautiful. Her bearing was lofty and full of majesty, 
and her whole person, her manners being agreeable, always 
pleased, except when she prevented it herself by a rude 
pride full of acerbity against those who ventured to 
displease her; then she changed entirely, and became 
the aversion of those to whom she showed it. We like, 


naturally, whatever flatters us ; never can that which despises 
and affronts us be agreeable. E ritrosa bella ritroso cuor 
non prende. 

After Madame la Princesse, such as I represent her, the 
Court had many beautiful women. Madame de Montbazon 
was one of those who made the greatest stir. She had 
extreme beauty with an extreme desire to please ; she was 
tall, and in her whole person we felt an air of freedom, 
gaiety, and hauteur. But her mind was not as fine as her 
body ; her lights were limited to her eyes, which imperiously 
demanded love. Her forehead was so well modelled and 
perfect that she always wore it uncovered without giving it 
any added charm by the arrangement of her hair ; the out- 
line of her face was so handsome that, to let it be seen, she 
wore her hair in very few curls. Her lips were not full; 
and for this reason her mouth seemed rather less prominent 
than was necessary to make her beauty quite perfect. She 
had fine teeth, and her neck was shaped like those the great 
sculptors represent to us in Greek and Roman beauties. She 
claimed universal admiration, and men paid her that tribute, 
ever vain, imperfect, and often criminal in its results and 
effects. I desire, nevertheless, to doubt, in the matter of 
gallantry, that which one ought never to believe, and which 
does not appear in evidence. But to show the character 
of her mind as to this, she told me one day when I saw 
her during the regency and praised before her one of my 
friends for being virtuous, that all women were equally so, 
and (with a laugh at me) she let me understand that she 
did not think much of that quality. 

Madame de Gue'mene'e, her daughter-in-law, was also one 
of the handsomest women at Court, and did not yield to her 
in the quantity of her lovers, or in valuing that sort of good 
which ladies imagine to be great triumphs. She had a very 


handsome face, all the features of which were equally per- 
fect. I heard the queen say, long afterwards, that on ball 
days when this one and that one was striving who should 
be most beautiful, she and Madame de Chevreuse, fearing 
Madame de Guemene'e, did what they could by many inven- 
tions to prevent her from effacing their beauty; and that 
sometimes when she arrived in a state to cause jealousy to 
those most perfect they would go in concert to tell her she 
was not looking well. On which, without consulting a 
mirror, she would go away quite terrified and hide herself ; 
by which artifice they often escaped the shame of not being 
the handsomest woman present. 

In the rank of those who were younger than Madame 
de Chevreuse, Madame de Montbazon, and Madame de 
Gue'mene'e, was Madame la Princesse Marie [de Gonzague] , 
with whom Monsieur, the king's brother, had been in love, 
and whom the queen, his mother, Marie de' Medici, had put 
away for some time in the forest of Vincennes, fearing that 
he would marry her. She was afterwards married to the 
King of Poland. There was also Mademoiselle de Eohan, 
who was very beautiful ; she seemed to wish to make profes- 
sion of extreme virtue and great pride, both of which she 
maintained until the time of the regency, when we beheld 
her pride change to passion, and her virtue, as I shall tell 
elsewhere, forced her to marry a gentleman of quality [Henri 
Chabot], but much inferior to those she might have chosen. 

There were other handsome women, particularly Made- 
moiselle de Guise, estimable in all things and whose beauty 
was great and perfect. Mademoiselle de Vendome was also 
a fine woman. They deserve, with many others, a panegyric 
in their favour, but I shall pause only on Mademoiselle de 
Hautefort, who made, as soon as she came to Court, a 
greater effect than all the other beauties of whom I have 


spoken. Her eyes were blue, large, and full of fire, her 
teeth white and even, and her complexion had the fairness 
and glow which belong to a blond beauty. The number of 
those who loved her was great ; but then: chains were often 
made heavy to bear ; for though she was kind she was not 
tender, severe, rather than hard, and naturally satirical. 

As soon as the king saw her he had an inclination for 
her. The queen-mother, to whom she had been given as 
maid-of-honour, seeing this little spark of fire in the soul of 
a prince so shy of women, tried to light rather than extin- 
guish it, in order to gain his good graces by such compliance. 
But the piety of the king made him attach himself so little 
that I heard this very Mile, de Hautefort say later that he 
never talked to her of anything but dogs, birds, and hunting ; 
and I have known her, with all her virtue, when telling me 
this history, laugh at him because he dared not come near 
her when conversing with her. This passion was not strong 
enough to bring him as often to the queen-mother's apart- 
ment as he would have come had he been really in love 
with one of her ladies ; instead of making her Court more 
gay and gallant, it only diminished the influence of the 
queen and increased that of the queen-mother. The latter 
was the absolute mistress of France, and her happiness 
seemed to be without a flaw ; but now came a change, which 
ought to show to all the world that no creature is safe from 
the blows of fortune, and that crowned heads, in being above 
those of other men, are the most exposed. 



THE queen-mother, having raised Cardinal Eichelieu, her 
favourite after Mare*chal d'Ancre, to the dignity of prime 
minister, she considered him her creature and believed she 
would always reign through him; but she deceived herself, 
and gained cruel experience of the little fidelity to be met 
with in those who have unbounded ambition. I do not know 
what grounds of complaint she had against him, and few per- 
sons have known them ; I have only heard say that, not being 
satisfied, she desired to ruin him, supposing it to be an easy 
thing to do, and that no one could object if, being mistress of 
her work, she destroyed it when she saw fit. 

But that which seems to us right when we wish it, is 
often not according to the impenetrable will of God, who 
does not choose that human judgment should be followed by 
events that would authorize it. I knew from the queen, who, 
not liking Cardinal Eichelieu, was glad to know all that was 
doing against him, when I put her on the topic, that on a 
journey to Lyon when the king was so ill that he thought 
himself dying and the cardinal thought himself lost, the 
queen-mother (who was beginning to no longer defend him 
against those who did him ill turns with her in order to get 
his place) requested the king to dismiss him ; and that this 
prince after promising that he would and agreeing to send 
him away whenever she wished, begged her to let him stay a 
little longer on account of the plans he had about Italy ; so 
that Queen Marie de' Medici, satisfied with this willingness, 


would not press her son to dismiss him immediately for fear 
of inconveniencing his affairs, and contented herself with his 
promise to do so whenever it pleased her. 

By this kindness which deprived her of happiness for the 
rest of her life, she enabled the cardinal to get her sent away 
herself, though the mother and mother-in-law of the greatest 
kings in Europe. Marie de' Medici had given a queen to 
Spain, a sovereign to Savoie, a queen to England, and a king 
to France ; but all these dignities which environed her could 
not guarantee her from disaster. The Court having returned 
to Paris, she pressed the king to fulfil his promise, and, as 
she supposed the affair to present no difficulty, she was 
astonished to find that the king resisted it. He not only 
asked for time, but he urgently entreated her to forgive 
Cardinal Richelieu. 

The queen-mother, surprised and angry at the proposition, 
burst out against her son, shed tears, and reproached him, 
neglecting nothing that might win her the victory in this 
battle. But, far from succeeding, she found that her son and 
judge was in collusion against her with her enemy, and was 
quasi on his side. Cardinal Richelieu entered the room 
where they were together, to plead his cause in concert with 
the king. The queen-mother, all in tears and provoked that 
he had come into that room against her will, called him a 
traitor, told him it was true that she complained of him to 
the king, and railed against him with the strong feelings that 
always accompany great affronts and great hatreds. She did 
the same to his niece, the Duchesse d'Aiguillon, who entered 
towards the end of the conversation, treating her with the 
utmost contempt. 

But the cardinal, without showing surprise, threw himself 
at her feet and asked pardon on his knees, doing, so they say, 
all that he could to obtain it. The queen-mother, incensed 


against her son for having refused her, and full of wrath 
against the servant whom she believed unfaithful, would not 
pardon him. Nor would she pardon the king himself, who 
knelt before her and seemed in great trouble. Finding him- 
self refused, without any plan of what came later but with a 
sense of grief for the quarrel, the king went off to Versailles 
to reflect on what he had better do. 

The cardinal, quite overcome, not knowing whether he 
ought to abandon all, took counsel with Cardinal de la Va- 
lette ; after which he followed the king, and served his own 
purposes so adroitly by the advantage that personal presence 
gives, that he made himself in a short time, or rather in a 
few hours, master of the king's mind. It was then deter- 
mined to arrest the Keeper of the Seals Marillac ; and there 
is little doubt that Cardinal Kichelieu began on this day to 
premeditate what was done later at Compiegne against the 
queen-mother, his benefactress. This day, so terrible in its 
effects and its changes, has since been very famous, because 
many persons who agreed with the queen-mother in wishing 
the dismissal of Cardinal Kichelieu, were duped in all their 
hopes and suffered for them. [This was the celebrated 
" Day of the Dupes," November 11, 1630.] 

Queen Marie de' Medici, by remaining in Paris at her 
house of the Luxembourg and not following the king, ruined 
her cause completely. She abandoned it in this way to the 
artfulness of her enemy, and ruined at the same time the 
great seigneurs of the kingdom, who, hating the cardinal, had 
made common cause with her. It was said that the whole 
cabal had held certain councils against the cardinal in which 
each member had given his opinion ; and later he treated 
these persons according to the manner of their advice: 
Mare*chal de Marillac, who was said to have advised that he 
be killed as soon as the king abandoned him, he put to death 

VOL. I. 4 


very unjustly ; Mare*chal de Bassompierre, who had proposed 
imprisonment only, was put in prison himself, where he 
stayed twelve years; and so with the others, as the mare'- 
chal, whom I knew later during the queen's regency, con- 
firmed to me. This was the first cause of all the many 
persecutions and exiles which made, during this century, so 
large a number of illustrious unfortunates. Monsieur, the 
king's brother, Gaston de France, who was ever at the head 
of all these cabals, was, with good reason, at the head of this 
one on account of the queen his mother. 

Some time after this " day of the dupes " the Court went 
to Compiegne, the two queens in the best understanding on 
account of the hatred they united in feeling for Cardinal 
Richelieu, and also because their fates began to be alike. 
The king, having the intention to arrest the queen his 
mother, was very restless ; although he had done the same 
thing before, the influence of nature, which he now had to 
conquer at an age when he knew his duty better, weakened 
at times his resolution and made it uncertain. On the other 
hand, the minister, impatient to avenge himself, to satisfy 
and secure himself, turned many schemes over in his head ; 
while the queen-mother, ill-treated by her son, and little con- 
fident of succeeding in her designs, was far from tranquil in 

A few days after their arrival, the day on which the des- 
tiny of so many great personages was to be fulfilled, a knock 
was given very early in the morning on the door of the queen's 
[Anne of Austria's] chamber. Hearing the sound she woke, 
astonished, and called her women to know if, by chance, it 
could be the king at her door. He alone had the right 
to treat her with such familiarity. In that instant, having 
herself opened her curtains and seen that it was scarcely 
daylight, she was troubled by a thousand thoughts that 


passed through her mind. As she always doubted, and with 
reason, of the king's good-will, she fancied they had come to 
bring her some fatal news which, at the least, might exile 
her from France. Eegarding this moment as one which 
might decide her whole life, she strove to gather up her 
strength to meet the blow with as much courage as possible. 
She had by nature a firm soul and a sufficiently resolute 
mind, and I do not doubt what she did me the honour to tell 
me afterwards when relating these particulars, that, the first 
moment over, she resolved without much difficulty to receive 
with submission whatever Heaven ordained for her. 

She bade them open the door, and her first waiting-woman 
returning to tell her it was the Keeper of the Seals who 
asked to speak with Her Majesty from the king, she was 
fully confirmed in her first belief. This apprehension was, 
however, soon removed by the speech of the envoy. He 
told her that, for certain reasons which concerned the wel- 
fare of the State, the king was obliged to leave his mother 
in that place under guard of Mare'chal d'Estre'es, and that 
he begged the queen not to see her, but to rise and come 
to him at the Capucins, where he had already gone to await 

At this news the queen was much surprised, as any one 
who loved justice and right reason would be ; but she was 
comforted to find that the matter only touched her through 
the compassion she must feel for the queen, her mother- 
in-law. She replied to the king's commands by prompt 
obedience, and rose as quickly as she could to go to him. 
But not without first going to see the disgraced queen. She 
thought the king would pardon her that small disobedience, 
which pity alone induced her to commit ; but, by the advice 
of the Marquise de Senece', her lady-of-honour, she sent 
to the unhappy queen-mother, to express the desire she had 


to see her and speak to her on a matter of importance, 
though, for certain reasons, she dared not go to her unless 
she first sent to ask her to do so. 

The queen-mother, knowing nothing of this decision, 
although, in the position she felt herself to be in, she feared 
a return of all the evils she had already borne, sent Made- 
moiselle Catherine, her first waiting-woman, at once to do 
what the queen requested, a slyness asked solely to satisfy 
the king. The queen took only a dressing-gown and went 
in her night-dress to the queen-mother, whom she found 
sitting up in her bed. She was hugging her knees, and, not 
knowing what to think of this mystery, she cried out as the 
queen entered : " Ah ! my daughter, either I am dead or a 
prisoner. Will the king leave me here? What does he 
mean to do with me ? " The queen, touched by compassion, 
flung herself into her arms, and though in the days of her 
favour the queen-mother had sometimes ill-used her, the 
position she was now in effaced such memories ; she wept for 
her downfall, she felt it, and showed a sincere regret for the 
king's decision, which she told her, and also the order for 

tie two princesses parted, satisfied with each other and 
much touched at seeing themselves the victims of Car- 
uiiial Richelieu, their common enemy. This was the last 
time they saw each other, for the queen-mother, alarmed at 
an imprisonment in Compiegne, escaped during the night 
[July 19, 1631] and went to Flanders, where the Infanta 
Clara-Eugenia, granddaughter of Charles V. and aunt of the 
queen, received her and treated her well. She received in 
the same manner Monsieur, the king's only brother, Gaston 
de France, who, after having threatened Cardinal Eichelieu, 
went to share with his mother the kindness of that great 


The queen, having satisfied by this pitying visit what she 
owed to one who so shortly before had seemed to have abso- 
lute power, went to the Capucins to meet the king, who was 
awaiting her in order to take her back to Paris. There, he 
made her a present of Mademoiselle de Hautefort, of whom I 
have already spoken, whom he had taken from the queen- 
mother; also of Madame de la Flote, Mademoiselle de 
Hautefort's grandmother, as lady of the bed-chamber. Some 
time later he gave the beautiful granddaughter the reversion 
of that office, in order that she might have the title of 
" Madame." The king, in presenting her to the queen, said 
that he begged her to like her and to treat her well for his 
sake. She was then without lady of the bed-chamber ; since 
the dismissal of Madame Du Farges, whom she liked, she 
had never been willing, from vexation and revenge, to fill her 
place ; but she was now constrained to accept all that the 
king chose to give her, for this was no time to say, " I will 
not." She received both ladies with the best face in the 
world, and though such presents do not usually please wives 
very much, it is nevertheless true that the queen loved 
Madame de Hautefort for herself, and that that beautiful and 
virtuous girl, esteeming the noble qualities of the queen, 
and sufficiently disgusted with the king's temper, gave her- 
self entirely to her, and was faithful to her through all her 
troubles. The king, some years later, angry at this change, 
wished to harm her; he ceased to love her much when 
she began to love the queen, and when he saw that she was 
entirely devoted to her, he ceased to love her at all. His 
resentment went so far at last that he dismissed her, and 
sent her back to her province, where she was when he 

After the great stroke at Compiegne, the king, to soften 
in some way the bitterness the people felt against him for 


the imprisonment of his mother, and for rigours enforced 
against many private persons, treated the queen, his wife, 
rather better, and saw her oftener ; this pleased the people, 
because she was much loved. Cardinal Eichelieu, to con- 
ciliate her, brought back Madame de Chevreuse from Lor- 
raine where she had passed her exile ; no doubt that lady 
promised him all he wanted of her. The cardinal, in spite 
of his severity against her, had never hated her. Her beauty 
had charms for him, but as she was allied with the queen 
and contraband with the queen-mother, ambition, which 
always carries the day over friendship, had forcibly removed 
her from the good graces of the minister. But after he had 
himself quarrelled with his benefactress, wishing to be recon- 
ciled with the queen and to gain alliance with her through 
her_favourite, he brought the latter back to Court. 
f After all this the king, following his natural inclinations, 
/abandoned himself wholly to the power of the cardinal. 
' He found himself reduced to the most melancholy, most 
; miserable life in the world; without suite, without Court, 
/ without power, and consequently without pleasure and with- 
L out honour. In this way several years of his life were 
passed at Saint-Germain, where he lived like a private 
person, and while his armies were taking cities and fighting 
battles he was amusing himself by snaring birds. This 
prince was unhappy in every way; he did not love the 
queen, but on the contrary felt a coldness to her, and he 
was the martyr of Madame de Hautefort, whom he loved in 
spite of himself, and whom he could not resolve to send away 
from Court, though accusing her of laughing at him with the 
queen. Moreover, he had scruples about his attachment to 
her, and did not approve of himself. Jealous of the grandeur 
of his minister, though it came only from the part which he 
himself bestowed, he began to hate him when he saw the 


extreme authority he assumed in his kingdom; and not 
being able to live happily either with or without him, he 
never was happy at all. 

The queen accustomed herself to her solitude as best she 
could, leading a pious and private life, and living only on 
news which her attendants and her friends brought to her. 
She made a few little intrigues against the cardinal, or at 
least desired to make some that might ruin him. He only 
laughed at them, and his power increased through the need 
the king had of his counsels. He made all France adore 
him and obey the king, making his master his slave, and that 
illustrious slave the monarch of a great kingdom ! 

Amid such gloomy humours and dark fancies it would 
seem that a great passion could find no place in the king's 
heart. Nor did it after the fashion of men who find pleasure 
in it ; for this soul, accustomed to bitterness, had no tender- 
ness beyond that of feeling the more for his own pains and 
sorrows. But at last, weary of suffering, he dismissed, as I 
have said, Madame de Hautefort, and turned his inclinations 
to a new object whose brunette beauty was not so dazzling, 
but who, with beautiful features and much charm, had also 
great sweetness and strength of mind. La Fayette, maid-of- 
honour to the queen [Louise Motier de La Fayette], amiable 
and proud both, was the one he loved ; and it was to her 
that he unbosomed himself most about the cardinal, and the 
vexation that his power gave him. 

As this young girl had an upright heart she did not fail 
to keep the secrecy she owed to the king. She strengthened 
him in his aversion from the regard she felt for him, think- 
ing him dishonoured by too basely allowing himself to be 
governed by the minister. The cardinal did his best to 
win her over, as he did all persons who approached the 
king ; but she possessed more courage than the men of the 


Court, who had the baseness to tell the cardinal what- 
ever the king said against him. They feared, if they were 
faithful, to lose benefits, and their interests seemed to them 
something better than integrity. They feared also that the 
king, ever timid, would betray them, and they wished to be 
the first to betray. But a young girl had a finer and firmer 
soul than they ; she resolved to do right, and had the courage 
to despise ill-fortune through a secret resolution which she 
made in her heart to become a nun. 

The king, finding in her as much security and virtue as 
beauty, respected and loved her ; and I know that he had 
thoughts about her that were far above the common affec- 
tions of mankind. The same sentiment which made this 
generous girl refuse all relations with Cardinal Kichelieu 
also made her live under some reserve with the queen. 
Not that she did her any ill-offices, as her rival, Madame 
de Hautef ort, tried to persuade the queen she did she was 
too virtuous for that ; and the queen knew, later, the good- 
ness and generosity of her whole conduct. But the fact is 
she liked the king, and said so openly ; for a pure and honour- 
able friendship can be owned without shame. And truly, 
the virtue and propriety of the king, which equalled that of 
the most modest woman, controlled him strictly ; so that she 
felt she ought to repay that virtuous affection by great 
fidelity to his confidences. I am assured that she was the 
only person who ever had such feelings towards him, and 
consequently the only one who could have made the happi- 
ness of his life. 

^~Ao. attachment so great and so perfect could not fail to 
please the king and displease the queen, though the latter 
was used to the misfortune of not being loved by her hus- 
band. This deprivation of a happiness she desired and 
thought her due, in whatever way it was seasoned to her, 


did not fail to seem to her very hard and disagreeable. La 
Fayette, avowing openly that she, loved the king, and in the 
manner he seemed to wish, might have made the happiness 
of his life. But the king was not fated to be happy ; he 
could not keep his treasure. It was said that the cardinal 
made use of his piety to deprive him of it, and that, not 
being able to have La Fayette in his own pay, he used her 
confessor to give her scruples as to her compliance to the 
king, which idea was so shrewdly managed by the confessors 
of both that the love of God triumphed over human love ; 
La Fayette retired to a convent, and the king resolved to 
permit it. The truth is, that God destined her for that 
happiness, in spite of the malice and false arguments of the 
Court people. Pere Caussin, confessor of the king, has him- 
self written in his Memoirs (which the Comte de Maure, to 
whom he confided them, showed me) that instead of adher- 
ing to Cardinal Eichelieu, as he was supposed to have done, 
he advised her, in view of the innocent intentions with 
which he credited her, not to make herself a nun ; thinking 
that he would himself use her to inspire the king to recall 
the queen-mother, and govern the kingdom himself. 

But she, who was urged by Him who gives the will and 
the power to do, did not hesitate long between God and 
His creatures. Perhaps also she saw with some vexation 
the intrigue that was forming against her, and pride 
mingled with virtue had some share in her retreat. It 
was even suspected that her relation, Madame de Senece' 
had tried to give her over to the cardinal. I do not know 
the ground or the details of this accusation; I know only 
that she begged the king's confessor to go to him and ask 
permission that she might quit the Court and enter a con- 
vent. Pere Caussin describes in his memoirs the pains 
he took to examine into the vocation of La Fayette, and to 


give the king the advice he asked of him. He states that 
the king seemed much afflicted at the resolution of the vir- 
tuous young girl, and threw himself back into the bed from 
which he had risen when the father began to speak to him, 
weeping, and complaining that she wanted to leave him ; but 
at last, having conquered the tortures of his grief by his 
piety, he made him this answer : " It is true she is very 
dear to me ; but if God calls her to religion, I will put no 
hindrance to it." 

This permission being once obtained, she was seen to 
leave the Court suddenly, in spite of the tears of the king 
and the joy of her enemies, which, as she told me afterwards, 
were the only things to conquer. It needed great strength 
of mind to put herself above that weakness, for though the 
king was not gallant, the ladies of the Court were none the 
less glad to please him. Among others, Madame de Haute- 
fort was far from sorry at her retirement; she was not 
ashamed to be thought her rival; and there was no prude 
who did not aspire to be loved by the king as he had loved 
La Fayette for everybody was convinced that the passion 
she had for him was not incompatible with virtue. When 
she parted from him she talked to him long before all the 
company in the queen's room, where she went as soon as she 
had received his permission to leave. No change appeared 
on her face ; she had the strength not to give a single tear 
to those which the king shed publicly. After quitting him, 
she took leave of the queen, who could not like her; she 
did this with gentleness and the satisfaction a Christian 
must have in seeking God, wishing to love but Him on 
earth, and to desire only eternity. 

The king was not long without going to see her at the 
convent of the daughters of Sainte-Marie, in the rue Saint- 
Antoine, which she had chosen for her life-long place of 


rest and the haven of her salvation. The first few times he 
went there he stayed so long before her grating that Car- 
dinal Eichelieu, thrown into fresh alarms, resumed his in- 
trigues to detach the king wholly from her. He succeeded 
finally and found means to take from his master the con- 
solation of sharing his griefs with the only person he had 
found discreet and faithful enough to confide in, and one 
with a spirit that was soft and pleasant enough to soothe 
them. It was to the king as cruel a deed as that of a rob- 
ber on the highway who takes from a traveller his all ; for 
the greatest of the blessings of life is the love of a faithful 
friend; and if my uncle, the Bishop of Se'ez, says in his 
poems, with the approval of everybody, that to love a young 
beauty is " the sweetest error of earth's vanities," it is even 
more true to say that to love solidly as the king loved La 
Fayette was the sweetest of all innocent pleasures. 

I cannot, however, refrain, while on the subject of this 
pure and beautiful love between a prince so pious and a girl 
so virtuous, from relating a strong proof of the corruption 
which may always be met with in attachments of feeling 
which count themselves pure. I heard this from La Fay- 
ette herself who, being at Chaillot [where she founded the 
Convent of the Visitation] and my friend, talked with me 
confidentially. She told me that in her last days at Court, 
before she had fully resolved to enter religion, the king, so 
wise and so constant in virtue, had, nevertheless, certain 
moments of weakness in which, ceasing to be modest, he 
had pressed her to consent that he should place her at 
Versailles, to live under his orders and to be wholly his ; and 
that this proposal, so contrary to his usual sentiments, having 
alarmed her, was the cause of her resolving more quickly 
to leave the Court and take vows upon herself which must 
remove from his mind all sentiments of that nature. 


For some time nature struggled against grace, but grace 
was at last victorious. Otherwise the king would never have 
consented so easily that she might enter a convent ; but as 
soon as she was there, he had no pain in seeing her in a 
nun's dress, nor had she any in seeing him before the grat- 
ing ; both were far away from a desire to maintain an inter- 
course for which they might have scruples. But in order to 
have peace with his minister, he consented to lose this one 
satisfaction that remained to him, and he left her to give her- 
self entirely to Him who gives to all according to their ac- 
tions, contenting himself with now and then sending a priest 
from Saint-Germain to bring him news of her. I know that 
this piety brought him to certain thoughts of inward retreat; 
and though he still went sometimes to see her, it was to 
talk over designs known to none but herself, which would 
have astonished Europe had they been executed. But God 
was satisfied with his intention, and, to reward him for 
the sacrifice he wished to make to Him, He granted the 
prayers of his subjects by taking from him those melan- 
choly thoughts which prevented his living well with the 
queen, who at last became pregnant. It is even said that 
La Fayette was a secondary cause of the queen's pregnancy. 
Having stayed with her too late to return to Saint>Germain 
as he intended, he was constrained to go to the Louvre and 
share the bed of the queen, who had come to Paris for af- 
fairs of no importance ; and it is said that this gave us, Sep- 
tember 5, 1638, our present reigning king, Louis XIV. 

In the beginning of this pregnancy the king showed much 
satisfaction and even tenderness for the queen's person. 
But this comfort lasted but a short time, and when she was 
delivered it was necessary to urge him to approach her and 
kiss her. 

France supposed that after giving to the king a 


dauphin the queen would have some influence, but as the 
minister was not on her side, and* she was too generous to 
seek him, she remained in the same condition as before. As 
an increase of favour, however, God gave her a second son, 
Philippe de France, on the 21st of September, 1640, for 
which the king, as I have heard the queen say, showed far 
more pleasure than at the birth of the first, because he did 
not expect the great happiness of being father of two 
children, he who had feared he might have none at all. 
But it is a strange thing that the dauphin was only 
three years old when he began to cause him grief and 
umbrage. The queen did me the honour to tell me that one 
day, after a hunting party, the little prince, seeing his father 
in a night-cap, began to cry and was frightened, not being 
accustomed to see him thus, and the king was angry as if 
it were a matter of the greatest consequence, complaining 
to the queen and reproaching her for bringing up her son 
to aversion for his person, and roughly threatening to take 
away from her both her children. But when the king 
started for a journey to Narbonne he had with him his 
equerry Cinq-Mars, a man whom Cardinal Richelieu had given 
him as a favourite after the loss of La Fayette. Whether 
it was by Cinq-Mars' advice or of his own motion, he spoke 
to the queen in another manner. Bidding her farewell, he 
said quite cordially that he begged her to take good care 
of his children, and not to quit them which she religiously 
obeyed. Besides the interest that she had in their preser- 
vation she fastened all her pleasure to the agreeable oc- 
cupation of seeing and caressing them. 

December 4, 1642, Cardinal Eichelieu died gloriously in 
Paris at his own house, with the tranquillity of a private 
individual, and in the arms of his king, whom he made his 
heir in many things. He received all the sacraments. He 


died, laden with honours and glory, in the lustre of many 
virtues and the shame of great defects, of which cruelty 
and tyranny were the chief. It may be said of him that 
Ee "acquired a great reputation by procuring the good of the 
State and the power and grandeur of his prince. The 
harshness with which he treated the queen-mother, his mis- 
tress and his benefactress, during her exile, lessens by a 
great deal the eulogy that is due to his memory; and his 
cruelty towards many private persons makes him infinitely 
blamable. He died finally with the aspect of a saint, not 
having lived in all things the life of a Christian. I have 
heard it said that he asked a bishop if he could die in peace 
without having made restitution of the property he had 
taken from the public and from private persons, sometimes 
unjustly; and the bishop, accustomed to flatter him, having 
answered yes, that the great benefits he had done to France 
rendered his own legitimate, he begged him to give him that 
opinion in writing; and that writing he put very carefully 
under the "pillow of his bed, as if to serve as justification 
before God of his iniquities. What seems to me strange 
is that a man more able and possessing more knowledge 
than the man on whom he laid the burden of his scruple, 
should be willing to deceive himself in a matter where he 
alone could be the judge, and his own conscience the most 
faithful instructor he could consult. 1 

He seemed so content with having triumphed over his 
enemies that his chaplain could not refrain from urging 
him to forgive them; to which he answered that he had 
never had any enemies but those of the State. He had 
written books on the Education and on the Perfection of 
Christians ; therefore he ought to have known in what they 
consisted. Nevertheless the Bishop of Nantes, Cospean, 

1 On the margin is written : " This is not a certain thing." 


esteemed for his virtue and piety, who was afterwards 
Bishop of Lizieux, having gone to see him at the close of 
his life, said aloud, as he left the room after conversing with 
him, that his tranquillity astonished him. And they say 
that Pope Urbain VIII., hearing of his death and of his 
life, remarked, with a great exclamation : Ah ! die se gli e 
un Dio, ben tosto lo pagara ; ma veramente se non c'e Dio, 
& galantuomo. ("Ah! if there is a God he will soon pay 
for it ; but truly if there is no God, he is an able man.") 
An Italian friend of mine, whom I asked if that were true, 
told me it was true, and it was not surprising, for the good 
pope often jested and said witty things, but all the same 
he was a great man and had virtue which does not accord 
very well with such jokes. 

The queen, after this death, which did not afflict her 
much, began to foresee her coming power by the crowd that 
now surrounded her. It was not because the king showed 
her more consideration. The cardinal had worked with 
such care to destroy her in his mind that she could never 
obtain a better place there ; and the prince himself was by 
nature so gloomy, and at this time so crushed by his woes 
that he was no longer capable of any feeling of tenderness 
for one whom he had never been accustomed to treat well. 
But, serenity having returned to the faces of the courtiers, 1 * 
and this change giving hope and consequently joy to all, they I. 
began to consider the queen as the mother of two princes 
and the wife of a sickly king. She was nearing the period/ 
of a regency which would surely be a long one ; so that/ 
now she was regarded as a rising sun from which each in) 
particular expected to receive in his turn a favourable! 

The king, though ill, attended to all business, and publicly 
announced that he would have no other governor. He 


sent pardons to criminals, opened the prisons, suffered exiles 
to return, and did all that was needed to persuade his people 
that the late cruelties had not been done by himself and 
that his inclinations were far removed from them. All 
this mildness and calm caused the present reign to be 
blessed and the late severity detested; but it did not last 
long, for the king died shortly after. He had called to 
the ministry Cardinal Mazarin, an Italian by birth, but 
half Spanish from the years he had passed in Spain, and 
a friend of Cardinal Eichelieu. It is to be supposed that 
he would have gained power over the king had the latter 
lived, for he knew how to please when he chose. 

This was the state of the Court when France lost the 
king. He was still young, but so broken by fatigues, wor- 
ries, remedies, and hunting, that, feeling he could not live 
any longer, he resolved to die well in order to live eternally. 
He did it in a manner that was quite extraordinary. No 
one ever showed such constancy in suffering, such firmness 
in the^certain thought of his end, or such indifference to 
life. I He had always been unhappy because he had subjected 
himself to others, following the passions of his favourites 
rather than his own sentiments. This submission had led 
him to commit faults for which he repented within himself. 

There is reason to think that the innocent passions he had 
felt for Madame de Hautefort and La Fayette had caused 
him nothing but grief and a few moments of weakness 
which God had given him the grace to surmount; for he 
always appeared to fear God, and they both believed him 
very scrupulous, worthy in that of great praise if in other 
things he had shown the same strength. 

It was in his last days, in view of the judgments of God, 
that he repented keenly for having failed in keeping one 
of His first commandments. Cardinal Richelieu was no 


longer with, him to maintain the exile of the queen-mother 
as necessary to the State ; and, examining himself sincerely 
on that matter, what he had done against her now seemed 
to him as terrible as it really was. He openly asked pardon 
of God for it with great signs of a true repentance, and he 
did apparently all that a good Christian is bound to do, 
with sentiments of piety and marks of perfect faith. He 
had said to Chavigny at the beginning of his illness that 
he felt a cruel distress for two things : first, for having ill- 
treated his mother, who had lately died [Marie de' Medici 
died at Cologne July 3, 1642], and secondly, for not having 
made peace. 

Towards the end of the king's illness, when M. de Cha- 
vigny saw that the doctors considered the king had no 
hope of escaping, he took upon himself to warn him of the 
state in which he was ; which he did, while softening the 
harshness of the news as much as possible. Nevertheless, he 
represented to him with strength and courage that although 
he was a great prince he was on an equality with the least 
of men in death, and ended by saying it was time for him 
to think of quitting life. The king embraced him, and said, 
as he pressed him in his arms, that he thanked him for that 
good news, and assured him that he had never felt such joy 
in life as he received in hearing he was about to lose it. 
He made him withdraw that he might think of his con- 
science and his affairs; then, after passing half an hour 
alone, he recalled him and said, "M. de Chavigny, let us 
now think of business." They then made the plan of his 
will, in which he declared the queen regent. Madame de 
Chavigny told me that her husband, who had more share 
in this than Cardinal Mazarin, could have had Monsieur, 
the king's brother, appointed, the latter having requested 
him to do so ; but he held good for the queen, thinking he 

VOL. I. 5 


could thus serve his own interests better, in which he was 
much mistaken. The queen did not like him, and those 
about her had already resolved on his downfall. 

After this, the queen entered the council, and the king 
made the chancellor read the declaration, the plan of which 
had been written by Chavigny and adopted by the king. It 
was read in presence of the parliament and of the nobles 
of the kingdom. The king required the queen to swear 
that she would observe it inviolably. This she was obliged 
to do; but she did it with an intention contrary to the 
king's wishes as to certain persons, some of whom had 
gained his hatred, others his friendship. The king had 
wished to put in a clause that the Keeper of the Seals, 
CMteauneuf, and Madame de Chevreuse should be forever 
removed from the Court, as dangerous persons, whose minds 
were always to be feared. He was dissuaded by those who 
wished to please the coming regent, and who dared no longer 
act except in harmony with her. When the reader of the 
declaration came to the place where this was omitted the 
king, who was then moribund, fearing those two persons as 
favourites of the queen, rose in his bed and said aloud, 
" That is devilish, that ! " [ Voila le didble, cela !~\ 

Sdguin, the queen's head doctor told me that two hours 
before the king's death, as he passed before his bed, he made 
him a sign with his head and eyes to come to him, and 
holding out his hand said in a firm voice : " Se*guin, feel 
my pulse, and tell me, I beg of you, how many more hours 
I have to live ; but feel it carefully, for I should be glad to 
know the truth." The doctor, seeing his firmness, and not 
wishing to disguise a truth which he saw would not frighten 
him, said, quite coolly : " Sire, your Majesty may have two, 
or three hours at the most." On which the king, clasping 
his hands and turning his eyes to heaven, said softly, with- 


out showing any alteration whatever, "Then, my God, I 
consent, with all my heart." And shortly after he closed 
his eyes forever, May 14, 1643, aged forty-two years only. 

The queen seemed sincerely afflicted. She went at once 
to the little dauphin, or rather the king ; whom she saluted 
and embraced with tears in her eyes as her king and child. 
It may be said that she and all France did right to weep 
for the king, who, according to his lights and his sentiments, 
might even then have governed his kingdom gloriously. 
/He had defects which effaced him from the hearts of his 
subjects and of all his family ; but he had also great virtues, 
which, for his misfortune, have never been sufficiently 
known ; and the subjection of his will to that of his minis- 
ter had smothered all these nobler qualities. He was Jull 
of piety and zeal for the service of God and the grandeur 
of the Church ; and his greatest 'joy in taking La Kochelle 
and other places was the thought that he would drive all 
heretics from his kingdom and purge it in this way of the 
different religions which spoil and infect the Church of 

He was, as I have heard his most intimate favourites 

say, one of the best soldiers of his kingdom. He knew 
war, and he was valiant. I know this from those who in 
their youth were with him in danger, when he seemed not 
to fear it. He loved the officers on service, and this was 
the only matter he did not abandon to his minister. He 
himself knew the men of true courage, who had done fine 
actions, and he took great care to reward them. His keen- 
est vexation against the cardinal was that he often wanted 
to command his army in person, and the cardinal, fearing to 
let him go among such a crowd of his o\vn enemies, always 
opposed it and prevented it by a thousand contrivances. 
He had much intelligence and knowledge ; Cardinal Eiche- 


lieu himself said of him on several occasions that in his 
council he was always of the right opinion, and often found 
expedients in the most embarrassing matters. I have heard 
the Due de Saint-Simon, who was with him on the day he 
quarrelled with the queen-mother, say that he would not 
give up Cardinal Eichelieu when she asked it, from a prin- 
ciple of justice, because he was convinced that he had not 
been unfaithful to him ; that it was the Mare*chal de Maril- 
lac and the Mare"chal de Bassompierre and several others 
who, having formed a cabal with the Princesse de Conti 
against Cardinal Eichelieu, wanted, for their own private 
interests, to use the queen-mother as a buckler against him ; 
and that the king, knowing the services he had rendered him, 
thought himself obliged to uphold him ; but that never had 
he any thought of injuring the queen his mother to save 
the cardinal; on the contrary, his design was to keep his 
minister without failing in respect to her ; and that the first 
thing that alienated him from her was her urging him to 
dismiss the cardinal, and, having gone upon his knees before 
her to soften her, that she had no regard to his submission 
or to his prayers. It was this that caused him some vexa- 
tion, so that he went to Versailles, where the cardinal, by 
the advice of friends, followed him. At first the minister 
wished to retire, but the king said to him : " No, Monsieur 
le Cardinal, I will not allow it ; you have done no wrong to 
the queen my mother; if you had, I would never see you 
again ; but knowing that all these things are being done by 
a cabal, and that you have served me well, I should not be 
just if I abandoned you." 

Other persons of that time have also assured me that he 
never had any plan for what happened afterwards at Com- 
piegne. But soon after this [Day of Dupes] the cardinal 
made him understand that he must break up the cabal which 


was instigating the queen-mother to embroil the State ; and 
for that purpose she must be arrested for some little time, 
after which, her party being dead or imprisoned, it would be 
easy to bring her back again. But, the queen-mother having 
escaped to Flanders (which was, they say, arranged by the 
cardinal himself), it was easy for him to disguise the truth 
from the king her son, and persuade him that her absence 
was necessary for the peace of his kingdom. That is what 
may be said to excuse the greatest fault which the king 
committed; for as to the death of the Marshal d'Ancre, 
there was never any sign that he ordered it, or the indigni- 
ties that accompanied it, which must be attributed to the 
little discretion of those who had the order to arrest him, 
to the resistance offered by the attendants of the marechal, 
and to the hatred that the people had to him. Conse- 
quently, that matter did not prevent the king from ob- 
taining the title of Just. Nor has any one ever doubted 
that he was brave, and that he knew how to take an army 
into battle as well as any of his generals. But, besides 
these great qualities so necessary to great kings, he knew 
many things to which melancholy minds are wont to devote 
themselves, such as music and the mechanical arts, for 
which he had great skill and a peculiar talent. 



WE now come to the regency of the queen [May 15, 
1643], where we shall see, as in a picture, the various revo- 
lutions of fortune ; of what nature is that climate called the 
Court ; its corruption, and how fortunate should they esteem 
themselves who are not fated to live there. The air is never 
sweet or serene for any one. Even those who, apparently 
in perfect prosperity, are adored as gods, are the ones most 
threatened by tempests. The thunder growls incessantly 
for great and small; and those whom their compatriots 
regard with envy know no calm. It is a windy, gloomy 
region, filled with perpetual storms. Men live there little, 
and during the time that fortune keeps them there, they are 
always ill of that contagious malady, ambition, which kills 
their peace, gnaws their heart, sends fumes to their head 
and often deprives them of reason. This disease gives them 
a continual disgust for better things. They are ignorant of 
the value of equity, justice, kindliness. The sweetness of 
life, of innocent pleasures, of all that the sages of antiquity 
counted as good, seem to them ridiculous ; they are incapable 
of knowing virtue and following its precepts, unless chance 
may happen to remove them from this region. Then, if 
they can by absence be cured of their malady, they become 
wise, they become enlightened ; and no man can be so good 
a Christian or so truly a philosopher as a disillusioned 

On the morrow of the death of King Louis XIII., King 
Louis XIV., the queen, Monsieur le Due d'Anjou, the Due 


d'Orldans, and the Prince de Conde" quitted Saint-Germain 
to come to Paris. The body of the late king was left alone 
at Saint-Germain, without other surroundings than the peo- 
ple, who flocked to see it out of curiosity rather than tender- 
ness. The Due de VendSme remained there to do the 
honours, and the Marquis de Souvre", gentleman of the bed- 
chamber on service, to do his duty. Of all the people of 
quality who were paying their court the night before, not 
one remained to pay respect to his memory; they all ran 
after the regent. 

The queen had many on her side in the parliament ; 
among them its president, Barillon, who had been at all 
times attached to her person. All were of opinion that the 
queen should not be satisfied with a restricted regency as 
provided by the king, and that she ought to make use of the 
parliament to render her mistress of everything. 

She liked the proposal extremely, for it put her in a 
position to break her chains and dismiss those persons 
whom the king had appointed to take part in all delibera- 
tions. Chavigny and his father [President Bouthillier] were 
the ones she particularly desired to remove, as the creatures 
of Eichelieu and hated by those who were now the most 
powerful about her. On the other hand, the parliament 
desired to find occasion to recover the authority it had lost 
under the late king; and the able men of this assembly 
esteemed it fortunate that the queen (who thought that the 
late king had not treated her properly in his will) should 
wish to use them to receive from their hands the sovereign 
power which the king had seemed to take from her by 
ordaining that, in the council of regency, affairs should be 
determined by a plurality of votes. She herself could 
scarcely endure that restraint, and those who hoped to have 
a share in her confidence wished her to have the power to 


dismiss some of those who were appointed, in order that 
they might take their places. 

The offers of the parliament gentry to annul the declara- 
tion of the king in its present form were accepted. I have 
since heard Cardinal Mazarin say that the queen did them 
too much honour in putting them above the king's wishes 
and giving them the power to ordain a thing of so much 
consequence. She went to parliament, where, with the con- 
sent of Monsieur, Due d'Orle*ans, and the Prince de Conde", 
she was declared regent, without the appointment of a 
council The queen was in deep mourning, and took with 
her the king, who was still in his bibs and was carried by 
the Due de Chevreuse, his grand chamberlain, and accom- 
panied by the Due d'Orldans, his uncle, and the Prince de 
Conde", first prince of the blood, the dukes and peers, the 
marshals of France, and the whole council. 

The chancellor, Se"guier, made an harangue that was 
worthy of the esteem he had acquired; and, after exalting 
the virtues of the queen, he thanked Heaven for having given 
I to France a regent from whom they might hope to gain a 
general peace and the repose of the State. He then called 
for votes on the clause of the regency. Monsieur, uncle of 
the king, promptly and without hesitating, gave his in its 
favour ; declaring that of his own will he made . over to the 
queen all the power which, as only brother of the late king, 
he could have claimed in the kingdom in order that her 
regency might be more absolute and her will unlimited. 
The Prince de Cond6 said, in his turn, that since Monsieur 
so desired it he consented. I have heard the queen say, as 
to that consent, that it was by no means as frank as that of 
Monsieur, and that she noticed on his face a repugnance to 
give it ; and also that the difficulty he seemed to have hi 
resolving to do so made her feel more obligations to Mon- 


sieur, whose power would have been much greater had hers 
been limited, which it would have been had he voted as the 
Prince de Conde" wished. 

As she knew the opposition of the one, she must also have 
felt the yielding of the other ; which, in truth, was surpris- 
ing, seeing that it is not natural to give up so easily one's 
share in a great benefit. Many persons ascribed it to 
weakness, and this weakness to the selfish interests of his 
favourite, the Abbe* de la Kiviere, who was accused of de- 
taching him from ambitious sentiments in the hope of mak- 
ing his own private fortune through the benefactions of the 
queen, rather than by leading his master to great projects 
for which he may have thought him incapable, for the 
soul of that prince was not turned to things heroic. How- 
ever that may be, the two lions were tamed, and Monsieur 
contented himself with the station of generalissimo of the 
armies of France, very different hi that from the king his 
father, Henri le Grand, of whom it was said that never was 
there a better king nor a worse prince of the blood. Indeed 
the great qualities that make a great king do always pre- 
vent the first prince of the blood from being peaceable and 
without faction. 

As soon as the queen saw herself independent and abso- 
lute mistress, she dismissed Chavigny from the council, and 
took the finances from his father, Bouthillier, to give them 
to President de Bailleul, whom she knew to have much 
integrity, without knowing if he had any talent for that 
office. At the same time she sent to Eome to ask for a 
cardinal's hat for the Bishop of Beauvais, recalled the 
Duchesse de Chevreuse from exile, and did favours to many 
private persons without regarding the just measure that the 
great are bound to examine, but which she did not duly 
observe because as yet she did not know the value of her 


liberalities, while every one hastened to ask favours of her 
boldly and refusal gave her too much pain to inflict. 

The Due de Vendome, and his whole family, had so far 
gained more than any one by the king's death ; and particu- 
larly his youngest son, the Due de Beaufort, for the queen 
during the last days of the king's illness had confided to the 
latter the care of her children. The fame of this confidence 
had attracted so many persons to him that he seemed for a 
time to be master of the Court. 

The queen had intended to take the government of Havre 
from the Duchesse d'Aiguillon and give it to the Prince de 
Marsillac, a friend of Madame de Chevreuse and Madame de 
Hautefort, who was very handsome, had much wit and many 
ideas, and whose extraordinary merit destined him to cut a 
great figure in the world. The duchess, Eichelieu's niece, who 
had played a great part during the ministry of her uncle, now 
commanded in Havre, and that government was left to her 
by consent of the late king, to hold it for her nephews. 

This lady, who by her fine qualities surpassed ordinary 
women in many ways, was so well able to defend her cause 
that she almost convinced the queen that it was necessary 
for her service to leave her in that important place, telling her 
that having none but enemies now in France, she could have 
no safety or refuge, except under the protection of her 
Majesty, who would always be her mistress, while, on the 
contrary, the Prince de Marsillac to whom she was giving 
the government was too clever, too capable of ambitious 
designs, and might at the least affront join some cabal; 
it was, therefore, important for the good of the service that 
she should keep this place safe for the king. The tears of 
a woman who had once been so proud arrested the queen in 
the first place, and then, after reflecting on these reasons, she 
thought it best to leave things as they were. 


The complaints of the Prince de Marsillac were many ; he 
murmured publicly against the queen, and, on the first 
occasion that presented itself, he let her see that he felt her 
change, and was resolved to abandon her interests and take 
others in revenge, which was in part the cause of all our 

The Bishop of Beauvais did not maintain public affairs 
with the force and capacity a prime minister ought to have ; 
the queen, drawn from a life of great idleness, and by nature 
lazy, felt herself completely overwhelmed by so great a 
burden. She was not long without seeing that she needed 
help, and that it was impossible for her to govern a State as 
large as France, or distinguish all alone the interests of the 
people and those of the nobles, which are two very different 
things ; it is certain, moreover, that a long time was needed 
to examine that question, which would harass the greatest 
minds if they were not accustomed to toil, and had no 
knowledge of public business. 

That which gave the greatest trouble to the queen was 
the desire she had to satisfy, as far as she could, those who 
demanded justice for the losses they declared they had 
borne under the ministry of Cardinal Richelieu, who came in 
great numbers and were very difficult to content. 

In this interval of disgust and embarrassment, Cardinal 
Mazarin, appointed by the late king as one of the council, 
was lucky enough to be fated, and then chosen by the queen, 
to fill that place. She had not dismissed him, because she 
had no dislike to him; and as he was very able he had 
won the favour of the Prince de Conde", who did not like 
the VendQmes, and he had put into his interests the Due 
d'Orle'ans' favourite, the Abb de la Riviere, who was not of 
their party. 

At the same time he acquired as friends those who were 


servants of the queen without being of the VendQme cabal ; 
such as the Marquis de Liancourt, the Marquis de Morte- 
mart, Beringhen, and Lord Montague, an Englishman whom 
the queen had known in the days of Buckingham, and 
who retained a familiarity with her. The first two were 
recommended by the regard the late king had felt for them, 
and the last two by the confidence the queen reposed in 
them. They were all former courtiers who esteemed Car- 
dinal Mazarin, having known him long before in France 
with Cardinal Eichelieu, and they now gave all their atten- 
tion to persuading the queen of his ability. They had not 
much trouble in succeeding, for the queen was already dis- 
gusted with the Bishop of Beauvais, so much so that by 
her own inclination she was quite disposed to make use 
of the cardinal, whose wit and person pleased her in the first 
conversation she had with him. During the life of the late 
king she had quite often signified, in speaking of Cardinal 
Mazarin, that she esteemed him, and to those in whom she 
confided she declared she was not sorry to see him in order 
to inform herself about foreign affairs, of which he had a 
perfect knowledge, and in which the late king had employed 
him. Following, therefore, her personal sentiments, the 
advice of some of her best servants, and the desire of the 
Due d'Orle'ans and the Prince de Cond who declared they 
esteemed him, she willingly gave him her confidence, yielded 
her authority to him, and allowed him to acquire within 
a few days the highest degree of favour in her heart, while 
those who believed they possessed it solely never imagined 
that he dared to even think of it. 

This insinuating process was so easily carried on in the 
soul of the queen that the cardinal became in short time 
master of the council, the Bishop of Beauvais diminishing 
in power in proportion as that of his competitor increased; 


the new minister beginning from this time to come every 
evening to the queen, and hold long conferences with her. 
His gentle, humble manner, beneath which were hidden his 
ambition and his designs, made the opposite cabal have 
almost no fear of him ; they regarded him at first with the 
assumption that favour inspires. But the fickle creature to 
whom under the name of Fortune pagans burn incense, 
desiring, as usual, to mock at those who follow her, aban- 
doned them all to give herself wholly to a foreigner, and 
raise him suddenly from the first rung of the ladder to 
ithe highest a private individual could reach, above all the 
princes and grandees of the kingdom. 

While these intrigues were tangling in the cabinet, God 
was favourably taking part in our affairs in the field. The 
Prince de Condd had a son, the Due d'Enghien. He had 
married in spite of his father a niece of Cardinal Eichelieu, 
and commanded the armies when the king died. At the 
beginning of the regency he won a battle before Eocroy, 
which strengthened the good fortune of the queen, and was 
the first of the fine actions of that young prince, then twenty- 
two years of age, so brave and with so great a genius for 
war that the greatest captains of antiquity can scarcely be 
compared with him. The late king, a few days before his 
death, dreamed that he saw him giving battle and defeating 
the enemy at the very spot. This is a matter worthy of 
wonder, which ought to cause respect for the memory of 
the king, who, dying amid sufferings, and quitting the world 
with joy, seems to have had some light upon the future. 

This victory, won at the beginning of the queen's regency, 
was a good omen for what might follow, and, by making 
her feared without, put her in a position to manage all 
things within the kingdom. But the princes of Vendome 
and the Bishop of Beauvajs were growing uneasy. They 


now wished to oppose the new-comer, Cardinal Mazarin, and 
drive him away as an interloper, not liking that any one 
should share the influence they had with the queen. But 
they were not able to succeed, and what they did only 
served to ruin them. 

I have heard it said by Mare*chal d'Estre'es, uncle of the 
Due de Vendome and brother of the Duchesse de Beaufort 
whom Henri IV. had thought of marrying, that Cardinal 
Mazarin, in the early days of the regency, not knowing 
which side to turn, tried at first to join that cabal, as the 
one best established in the niind of the queen, and that he 
asked him, the mare'chal, to be his negotiator ; and as he 
was interested in the fortunes of these princes, being their 
nearest relative, he did his best to attach them to Cardinal 
Mazarin, whom he had known in Eome when he was sent 
there as ambassador. He thought him a great politician and 
a great courtier, and liked him, in consequence, doubly, 
believing that his ability and his shrewdness of mind would 
infallibly raise him to favour. It depended, therefore, solely 
on the Vendome princes whether or not he joined their for- 
tunes ; but they refused his friendship, from the hatred they 
felt to everything connected with Cardinal Richelieu. They 
could not help seeing, however, that he was a man to fear, 
not only for his ability, but for his charming manners which 
might make him beloved by the queen. 

The VendSme princes having thus missed their opportu- 
nity and refused alliance with Cardinal Mazarin, the for- 
tunes of that minister took a turn, but only to rise the 
faster and show the inconstancy of the things of this world. 
I know from the queen that one evening in the early days 
of her power she asked Lord Montague, who often spoke to 
her of Cardinal Mazarin, whether she could trust him, and 
what his natural temper was; and that Lord Montague 


having told her, in his praise, that he was the opposite in all 
things of Cardinal Eichelieu, that answer seemed to her 
such great eulogy, through the hatred she had to the memory 
of the dead man, that it helped her much in determining to 
use him. And after she had taken this resolution it was so 
fully confirmed daily that it soon became immovable ; and 
he, as prime minister, took the habit, as I said before, of com- 
ing every evening to converse with her. These conferences 
began from that time to be called " the little council." He 
remained a long time with the queen, all the doors being 
open to the place where she was. He related to her the 
various foreign affairs of which he had been master during 
the lifetime of the late king, having made himself (before 
becoming cardinal) capable of serving her well through the 
many high offices he had filled, whether in foreign affairs 
and in the interests of various princes, the King of Spain, 
and the Due de Savoie, or through the services he had given 
to France (which made him a cardinal) and the lessons he 
had derived from that able minister Cardinal Eichelieu 
whom would to God he had more closely resembled in 
certain ways. 

It is not astonishing that the queen followed his advice. 
The great reputation he had acquired in Italy, where, by a 
flourish of his hat, he was able, though at that time only 
il Signor Giulio, to stop the armies on the point of combat- 
ing, won him that of cardinal ; and the great affairs he had 
negotiated with Cardinal Eichelieu made the latter conceive 
so high an esteem for him that, intending to make him his 
successor, he had given him all the instructions necessary to 
serve France, binding him firmly to carry out his principles 
and perfect them. 

Every one knew that Cardinal Mazarin had been named 
in the declaration of the late king as prime minister, because 


Cardinal Kichelieu, before dying, had assured the king that 
he knew no one more capable than he of filling the place. 
And this declaration the queen made use of to obtain 
approval for her own choice of him. I know, as to that, that 
this lucky minister, being persuaded of his luck by that 
which he had already found in all phases of his life, said 
to one of his friends (the Mardchale d'Estrdes), while the 
decision was pending, that he was not troubled on that point, 
but merely that he did not as yet see how to spiegar le vele 
piu larghe (put on all sail). 

Here, then, was Cardinal Mazarin, his favour already con- 
spicuous through the crowd that was beginning to surround 
him. He replaced Chavigny in the ministry, being unable 
not to keep his word or refuse his obligations to those who 
had placed him near the queen, but he held him aloof from 
his confidence. He confirmed the queen in the inclina- 
tion she had to allow the Duchesse d'Aguillon to retain 
Havre, and he prevented her from ruining the relatives of 
Cardinal Kichelieu by telling her that they, having no pro- 
tection but hers, would doubtless be the ones who would 
serve her best. He did his duty in sustaining those who 
were left of a great man to whom he owed his grandeur. 
But, besides this reason, it was shrewd policy, seeing that he 
had this troop of courtiers on his shoulders, to make power- 
ful friends of those who held offices and possessed the 
highest dignities in the kingdom. In this he succeeded so 
well that in spite of the opposition of the queen's former 
friends, she relinquished the intention she had had of dis- 
missing Cardinal Kichelieu's followers, and the hatred she 
had seemed to feel so strongly against them in the early 
days of her regency. She passed easily to the greatest 
gentleness towards them, and, by her authority, they almost 
all became her confidants and were well-treated. 


This change, which was in the first place a counsel 
received and given from political maxims, readily became 
in the queen's soul a Christian principle, which her virtue 
and clemency made her value ;; and as she was capable 
of being deceived under a semblance of good, it is to be 
believed that Cardinal Mazarin, without being generous, 
advised her to act generously, intending to weaken the 
impulse of her heart towards hatred as well as towards 
friendship, so that, becoming indifferent to revenge, she 
might be more susceptible to the impressions he wanted to 
give her for his own interests. The queen, thinking his 
advice to be good and sincere, followed it without objection 
and even with some satisfaction, believing that she com- 
bined the good of the State with the pleasure of conquering 
| herself in her resentment. 

The favour of the cardinal was therefore more and more 
established in the mind of the queen, and the Vend6me 
party became truly alarmed by it. They made every effort 
to oppose it and to bring the queen back to her first feelings. 
But opposition has this quality, it excites the desire and the 
will to resist and combat. / The queen was determined to 
defend and maintain her minister by force of reason. She 
openly declared that she chose to make use of it, and said 
to all those who spoke to her, that his policy was sound in 
advising her not to enter upon any plans of vengeance, 
unworthy of a Christian and royal soul; and she freely 
showed to certain of her servitors that she should be very 
glad if they accommodated themselves to her inclination 
and will. Then, paying but little attention to the Bishop of 
Beauvais, she showed by all her actions that she had given 
her entire confidence to Cardinal Mazarin. 

He was capable of pleasing by his adroit mind, shrewd 
and clever at intrigue, and by a manner and behaviour full 

VOL. I. 6 


of gentleness, far removed from the severity of the preced- 
ing reign and well-suited to the queen's natural kindnessi lit 
has been thought that he was not worthy of her esteem ; but 
it is true, nevertheless, that he had laudable qualities which 
were fitted to repair the defects that were in him, although, 
increased by envy, those defects made him hated and de- 
spised by the people and by many honourable men. The 
queen had reason to esteem the beauty of his mind, his 
capacity, and the signs he gave her of his moderation. She 
readily believed that he was virtuous in all things because 
he had no apparent vice or evil qualities that she could 
then perceive; and although she judged him rather too 
favourably, the infinite difference between him and the 
Bishop of Beauvais renders the queen praiseworthy for her 

The Court being in this state, favour was still unsettled ; 
for, to the eyes of the public it did not seem as fixed as it 
really was, on account of the great stir which the princes 
of Vend6me still made. But this disturbance no longer had 
much force except through the unbridled audacity of the 
Due de Beaufort, who, young and well-made, with many 
friends and a haughty demeanour, seemed to live in the 
fashion of favourites. Nor could it be imagined that the 
queen would so quickly abandon those whom, up to that 
time, she had liked and treated with so many marks of 
sincere friendship. Cardinal Mazarin had only just dawned 
into her good-will; she gave him, apparently, no more 
favourable treatment than she did the Due de Beaufort, 
who spent whole days beside her, entertaining her gayly 
and with the freedom that smiling fortune inspires in the 
favoured. But the need of being served, and the pains the 
minister took to show that he was sincere and full of kind- 
ness, made the entire conquest of her confidence at all 


moments easy to him. The duke, his competitor, mingled 
what he had of good and praiseworthy with many defects; 
his youth deprived him of experience, his natural intelli- 
gence was very limited, he talked boldly and talked ill ; it 
is not surprising, therefore, that so many bad points pro- 
duced much that was not advantageous to him. 

About this time an affair happened which disclosed the 
intrigues of the Court, and was the cause of Cardinal 
Mazarin's finding himself, soon after, completely established 
in the power and eminence that he desired. It was by a 
special providence of God that the very things which mis- 
chief-makers tried to use to overturn the Court were actually 
what brought it into order, at the cost, however, of a few 
worthy persons. 

Women are usually the originating causes of the great 
convulsions of States, and wars which ruin kingdoms and 
empires proceed nearly always from the effects produced by 
their beauty or their malice. The Duchesse de Montbazon, 
who, in our time, held the first rank for beauty and gallan- 
try, being the mother-in-law of the Duchesse de Chevreuse, 
belonged with the latter to the Vendome cabal, not so 
much out of interest for her daughter-in-law, but because 
the Due de Beaufort was her lover. Consequently, both 
these ladies were opposed to the Princesse de Conde*, who 
liked neither the one nor the other, and who favoured the 
cardinal because of her hatred to ChMeauneuf, the Keeper 
of the Seals. 

Besides these contending interests, there was another very 
strong one between Madame de Longueville, daughter of 
the Princesse de Conde", and the Duchesse de Montbazon. 
This young and beautiful demoiselle de Bourbon had been 
forced by the prince her father to marry the Due de Longue- 
ville, who was the greatest seigneur, by reason of his vast 


property, whom she could have married. He followed in 
precedence the princes of the blood ; but he could not con- 
sider himself wholly worthy of her, because of his birth, and 
because of his age, and also because he was in love with 
Madame de Montbazon. These two ladies, therefore, with 
many reasons not to like each other, had strong inclinations 
to do each other harm; and the perfect beauty of Madame 
de Longueville, her youth, and her natural grandeur led her 
often to look down upon her rival with contempt. 

It happened one day that, Madame de Montbazon being 
at home in her house with a great company, one of her young 
ladies found a letter in the room, and picking it up carried 
it to her mistress. The letter was in a woman's handwriting 
and was tenderly addressed to some man whom she did not 
hate. As such matters are usually the talk of all companies 
and preferred to all else, the subject of laughter thus afforded 
to Madame de Montbazon's company was not neglected. 
From gayety they passed to curiosity, from curiosity to 
suspicion, and from suspicion they ended by deciding that 
the letter had fallen from the pocket of Coligny, who had 
just left the room, and who, it was whispered, had a passion 
for Madame de Longueville. This princess had a great 
reputation for virtue and prudence, although she was sus- 
pected of not hating adoration and praise. 

Those of Madame de Montbazon's company who first said, 
after her, that this letter was from Madame de Longueville, 
did not really believe it. It was then only an amusing story 
which each told secretly to friends, merely to divert those 
who had not heard it. But it was not long in reaching the 
ears of the Princesse de Conde*, who, with her proud and 
vindictive nature, resented it keenly, and it is impossible to 
say to what lengths she might not have earned her wrath 
and indignation. Madame de Longueville, who did not feel 


the matter less, but was more self-controlled, thought .it 
advisable not to make a stir. The jealousy she felt of 
Madame de Montbazon, being proportioned to the love she 
had for her husband, did not carry her so far but what she 
thought it best to overlook the outrage ; for it was of such 
a nature that she desired to smother it rather than make 
it the occasion of a solemn vengeance. 

The Princess, her mother, was actuated by other great 
interests. She knew how to profit by her advantage in 
having entered the house of Bourbon ; and being unable to 
restrain herself she made this quarrel a State affair. She 
came to see the queen and complained loudly of Madame 
de Montbazon. The Court was divided. The women, who 
had respect for the princess and little esteem for her enemy, 
ranged themselves on her side; while nearly all the men 
went over to Madame de Montbazon ; as many as fourteen 
princes were said to have gone to see her. This glory, with 
the pleasure of avenging herself on Madame de Longueville, 
who had married the lover she hoped to make her husband 
as soon as her present one, who was very old, was dead, 
were matters that gave much joy to a malicious woman who 
desired no other reputation than that of making a brilliant 
appearance and of having many lovers. 

But all the abettors of her vanity were soon after com- 
pelled to desert her from the fear they had of the young 
Due d'Enghien, who, when he heard of the anger of the 
princess his mother, showed plainly that he meant to support 
the interests of his sister with much warmth. That fear 
made them all withdraw quickly, for he alone was worth 
the fourteen other princes put together. Among this num- 
ber must be excepted, in the matter of esteem, M. de 
Nemours who had just married Mademoiselle de Vendome, 
an amiable prince and one of great worth. 


The queen, who had always liked the Princesse de Conde", 
was much disposed to favour her; she was mother of the 
Due d'Enghien who had just won a battle and was already 
making himself feared ; it was necessary to conciliate her in 
every way lest the peace of the regency be troubled. These 
considerations carried the day against all the rest. The 
thing in itself was compelling, and the right on the side of 
these persons obliged her to protect the fame of Madame de 
Longueville, who, besides her birth, had noble qualities, 
whose reputation had never yet been attacked, and who was 
very amiable personally. 

She was at this time pregnant, and had gone to La Barre, 
a country-house near Paris, to escape the first annoyance of 
this affair and to rest. The queen went to see her to com- 
fort her and promise her protection. After the opening 
speeches of civility, the Princesse de Conde* took the queen 
into an inner room where mother and daughter threw them- 
selves at her feet and asked justice for the outrage Madame 
de Montbazon had done to them. This they did with such 
feeling and tears that the queen, having done me the honour 
to tell me these particulars on her return from Barre, said to 
me that the princesses had made her pity them and she had 
promised they should be entirely justified. Which was done 
with all requisite ceremony, and in a manner that satisfied 

The Due de Beaufort, the great supporter of Madame de 
Montbazon, was beginning to fall from his first favour, which 
had dazzled every one. In spite of his love for Madame de 
Montbazon, the queen now favoured the Princesse de Conde" 
and Madame de Longueville. He asked for the admiralship ; 
it was refused him because Cardinal Mazarin had previously 
induced the queen to give it to the Due de Braze", nephew of 
Cardinal Kichelieu. The latter was already in possession 


and deserved it, but the office would have been taken from 
him had it not been for the cardinal. 

This change in the queen's mind was very displeasing to 
the opposing cabal, but it keenly affronted the Due de 
Beaufort personally. He was amazed to be refused a favour 
he had expected and which he openly said the queen had 
promised him. His resentment made him resolve to get rid 
of the minister, who was beginning to brave him on all 
occasions ; and the minister, seeing plainly how these people 
wished his downfall, determined to use the anger of the 
Princesse de Cond^ to drive them out and ruin them, if he 

That which proceeded from the malignity of Madame de 
Montbazon, seeking as much to gratify her private passion 
as to do harm to those who supported Cardinal Mazarin, 
served the cardinal usefully in getting rid of his enemies 
and in annihilating the cabals against him. As he had more 
intelligence than they, and that sort of cabinet intelligence 
which can work so many machines, it was easy for him to 
use these petty events to further his great designs. He was 
insinuating; he knew how to employ his kindness to his 
own advantage; he had the art of charming men and of 
making himself beloved by those to whom fate subjected 
him ; just as he had that of making himself hated and de- 
spised by those who were dependent on him, because he had 
the essential defects of great baseness of soul, avarice, and 
insincerity. I have heard it said by a person who knew him 
intimately in Eome (the Mare'chale d'Estrdes) that when his 
fortunes were only moderate he was the most agreeable 
man in the world ; which made me conclude that we ought 
not to feel surprised if he was able to please a great queen 
and two princes like Monsieur and the Prince de Cond^ 
(to whom he at first deferred in all things), while at the 


same time lie made himself disliked by all France with 
many signs of contempt and hatred. 

The queen, to pacify these little disturbances, which she 
regarded as trifles, ordered that the Duchesse de Montbazon 
should go to the Princesse de Conde* and not only make 
excuses to her, but also public reparation for what had been 
said either by her or by those who were at her house. The 
speech she was to make for this purpose was written out in 
the little salon at the Louvre on the tablets of Cardinal 
Mazarin, who was apparently working to pacify the quarrel 
to the satisfaction of both parties. I was present on the 
evening that all these important trifles were discussed ; and 
I remember that I wondered in my soul at the follies and 
the silly preoccupations of that society. I saw the queen in 
the large cabinet and the Princesse de Condd, excited and 
terrible, with her, making a crime of lese majeste* out of the 
affair. Madame de Chevreuse, involved for many reasons in 
the quarrel of her mother-in-law, was with the cardinal com- 
posing the speech that Madame de Montbazon was to make. 
Over every word parleys were held. The cardinal, playing 
the go-between, went from one side to the other to settle 
their differences, as if this peace were necessary to the wel- 
fare of France and to his own in particular. I never saw, 
as I think, such complete mummery ; for the thing in itself 
was nothing at all ; such things, and worse, happen every day 
not only to private persons, princes, and princesses, but to 
kings and queens. Crowned heads are, in every way, the 
most exposed to the injustice of evil tongues ; the most 
reasonable among them endeavour not only not to feel it, 
but not to punish it ; they know, and ought to know, that it 
is an irremediable evil. There is no place in the world 
where tongues are more licentious or minds more unchained 
in judging ill and speaking ill of sovereigns than our France. 


Every one declaims freely against king and ministers, every 
one takes upon himself to censure them freely, and no one 
thinks it improper. But fate chose that in this particular 
affair the license thus practised should have results of the 
greatest consequence. 

It was finally settled that the criminal duchess should go 
the next morning to the princess ; where she was to say that 
the talk made about the letter was false, and the invention 
of malignant minds ; l and that, for her part, she had never 
thought it, knowing too well the virtue of Madame de 
Longueville and the respect which she owed to her. This 
speech was written out in a little note attached to her fan 
in order that she might say it word for word to the princess. 
She did this in the haughtiest and proudest manner possible ; 
making a grimace which seemed to say, "I scoff at all I 

The Princesse de Conde*, after this satisfaction, entreated the 
queen to permit that she might never be in the same place 
with the Duchesse de Montbazon, which the queen granted 
readily. She was glad to do her that kindness, thinking the 
matter of no great consequence, though difficult to execute. 
It happened, some days later, that Madame de Chevreuse 
gave a collation to the queen in Regnard's garden at the end 
of the Tuileries. The queen, wishing to take the Princesse 
de Conde" with her, assured her that Madame de Montbazon 
would not be present because she knew she had taken medi- 
cine that morning. On this assurance the princess risked 
accompanying her. But when the queen entered the garden 
she was told that Madame de Montbazon was already there, 

1 I ought to say here that it was known for a certainty that this letter 
found in Madame de Montbazon's salon was written to Maulevrier by 
a lady [Madame de Tonquerolles, author of Memoirs of no value], 
who was very unworthy of being compared to Madame de Longueville. 
(Author's note.) 


assuming to do the honours of the collation as mother-in-law 
of the lady who gave it. 

The queen was much surprised ; she had promised security 
to the princess and was greatly embarrassed at the luckless 
encounter. The Princesse de Condd made a motion to retire 
in order not to trouble the fete ; but the queen retained her, 
saying that she herself must remedy the matter inasmuch as 
it was on her word that the princess came. To do this with- 
out an uproar, she sent to beg Madame de Montbazon to 
pretend to be taken ill and to withdraw, in order to relieve 
her from the embarrassment in which she found herself. 

But that lady, knowing the cause of her little banishment, 
would not consent to flee before her enemy, and was stupid 
enough to refuse this compliance to one to whom she owed 
much more. The queen was offended at such resistance ; she 
would not allow the Princesse de Conde" to go away alone, but 
she herself, declining the collation and the promenade, re- 
turned to the Louvre, much irritated at the little respect 
Madame de Montbazon had shown to her. As kings are 
usually far above those who offend them, they can easily 
avenge themselves. The next day the queen sent a com- 
mand to Madame de Montbazon to absent herself from 
Court, and to go to one of her country-houses. This she did 
at once, to the great regret of her friends, and even to that 
of the Due d'Orleans, who, having loved her in former days, 
still remembered that fact. He could offer no remedy, 
however, for the queen was angry. She had reason to be 
so, and her minister thought it expedient, even more for 
his own interests than because of the affront offered to 

This dismissal was immediately followed by that of the 
Due de Beaufort and of the whole troop of " the Importants." 
The intimacy he had with the exiled duchess, the anger he 


showed in finding that the cardinal had taken his favour 
from him, the hatred that the Prince de Conde", the princess, 
and Madame de Longueville felt against the whole cabal, but 
above all, the necessity which the cardinal felt to ruin him, 
led finally to his disgrace, caused the disaster of his life, and 
strangled the great hopes he had conceived, with some rea- 
son, of his . future fortunes. He was unlucky enough to be! 
unable to accommodate himself to the inclinations of the 
queen, who had always shown much friendship and con- 
fidence in him. In fact it was that which spoilt him ; wish- 
ing to possess that favour for himself alone, he could not 
endure to share it with another, to fail towards those he de- 
sired to place in the first rank, or to submit himself to the 
authority of a foreigner who was no friend to him. Conse- 
quently, being allied to those now out of favour, he was 
dragged down by them ; and, by his fate and that of others, 
he fell, and found himself reduced to a most deplorable ; 
condition. __^> 

He was suddenly accused of intending to assassinate 
Cardinal Mazarin, and the queen became convinced that he 
had twice thought of doing so. What I know of my own 
knowledge is that certain friends of the Due de Beaufort did 
not altogether deny it to me; and it is true that on the 
morrow of that day the rumour was strong at Court that an 
intention existed to murder Cardinal Mazarin. On this 
rumour, a great many persons came to the Louvre ; and the 
queen seemed to me very ill-pleased with the Due de Beau- 
fort and the whole cabal of " the Importants." She said to 
me, when I went up to her and asked the cause of the 

" You will see before twice twenty-four hours go by how I 
avenge myself for the ill-turns these evil friends have done 


As I was then without interests and without passion, and 
/was by nature rather discreet, I kept in my own heart, very 
secretly, what the queen had done me the honour to tell me, 
and waited, very attentive to observe and see the result of 
the two days of which the queen had notified me. Never 
will the memory of those few words be effaced from my 
mind. I saw at that moment by the fire that blazed in the 
eyes of the queen, and by the things that actually happened 
on the morrow and even the same night, what a royal per- 
\ sonage is when angry and able to do whatever she wills. 
"That same evening the Due de Beaufort, as he returned 
from hunting, met, on entering the Louvre, Madame de 
Guise, and Madame de VendOme, his mother, with Madame 
de Nemours, his sister, who had been with the queen all 
day. They had heard the rumour of assassination and 
had seen the emotion on the face of the queen. For this 
reason they did all they could to prevent the duke from 
going up to her, telling him that his friends were of opinion 
that he ought to absent himself for a few days and see what 
would happen. But he, not disturbed, continued his way, 
and replied to them, what the Due de Guise had said before 
he was killed, "They will not dare." He was bold, and 
still intoxicated with the belief of his favour. He had seen 
the queen in the morning, or on the evening of the preced- 
ing day, when she spoke to him with her usual sweetness 
and familiarity, so that he never imagined that his fate could 
change so readily. He therefore entered the queen's pres- 
ence in this perfect security. 

He found her in the great cabinet of the Louvre, where 
she received him amiably, and asked him a few questions 
about the hunt, as if she had no other thought in her mind. 
She had learned to dissimulate from the late king, her hus- 
band, who had practised that ugly virtue with more per- 


fection than any other prince in the world. But finally, 
after fulfilling with fine acting all that policy required of 
her, and the cardinal having entered during this suave con- 
versation, the queen rose, told the cardinal to follow her, 
and went, as if to hold the little council, into her own room. 
The Due de Beaufort then, intending to leave by the little 
cabinet, found there Guitaut, captain of the queen's guards, 
who arrested him and commanded him in the name of the 
king and queen to follow him. The prince, without seeming 
astonished, looked at him fixedly, and said, " Yes, I am 
willing; but it is, I acknowledge, rather strange." Then 
turning to Madame de Chevreuse and Madame de Hautefort, 
who were in the room and conversing together, he said to 
them, " Mesdames, you see that the queen has ordered my 

No doubt they were much surprised by the affair and 
pained by it, for they were friends of his; as for him, I 
think that vexation and anger filled his soul completely. 
He never imagined that after the service he had rendered 
the queen in her misfortunes she could ever resolve on 
treating him so ill. He was not a man disillusioned of the 
things of this world, nor one who could make the solid judg- 
ment that a reasoning mind would have made; he was a 
man of intelligence in many things, but strongly attached to 
the false glory that goes with favour ; consequently, he was 
ill-pleased to find himself deceived and his finest hopes be- 
trayed ; but as he was a man of courage, he put a good face 
on his misfortune. 

The next day, very early, the prisoner was taken to the 
forest of Vincennes. They gave him one of the king's valets 
to serve him, and a cook. His friends complained that 
his own servants were not given to him, but the queen, to 
whom I spoke of it at their request, assured me it was not 


the custom. Commands were sent to M. and Madame de 
Vendome, and M. de Mercosur, elder brother of the Due de 
Beaufort, and other of " the Importants " to leave Paris in- 
stantly, on which they retired to their country-places. M. de 
Vendome at first excused himself on the ground of being 
ill ; but to hasten his departure and make it more comfort- 
able, the queen sent him her own litter. 

The downfall of the Due de Beaufort was followed by 
that of the Bishop of Beauvais, who could not hold out 
against a competitor as powerful as Cardinal Mazarin. The 
hat which had been asked for him was countermanded. 
He seemed to quit the Court without regret, and went to 
find in his diocese of Beauvais a better master than the best 
and greatest kings of this world can ever be ; and there he 
lived a saintly life for the rest of his days. [This was a mat- 
ter of which one cannot speak without blaming the queen, 
because she might have made the bishop a cardinal without 
keeping him as minister. He was a worthy man, very pious 
and very peaceable; so that he could have lived at her 
Court beside her, without suspicion that his intrigues would 
ever trouble the State. He deserved much from her (she 
even owed him a great deal of money), and was very faith- 
ful to her. The money, no doubt, was paid, but his fidelity, 
which was worth more than the wealth of the Indies, was 
very ill rewardedj 

Madame de Chevreuse, disgusted at seeing all her friends 
exiled and ill-treated and her own influence lessening day 
by day, complained to the queen of the little consideration 
she showed to her old servants. The queen requested her 
not to interfere, but to leave her to govern the State and 
choose what minister she pleased and manage her affairs in 
her own way. She advised her, as she did me the honour to 
tell me, to live pleasantly in France, not to mix herself in 


any intrigue, but to enjoy under her regency the peace she 
had never had in the days of the late king. She represented 
to her that it was time to find pleasure in retreat and to 
regulate her life on thoughts of the other world. She told 
her that she promised her her friendship on that condition ; 
but, that if she chose to trouble the Court and meddle in 
matters in which she forbade her to take part, it would 
force her, the queen, to send her away, and that she could 
promise her no other favour than that of being the last 
person dismissed. 

Madame de Chevreuse did not take these remonstrances 
and counsels in the spirit that is practised in convents ; she 
did not believe that charity and a care for her salvation 
were their principal motive. It is not in a Court that such 
merchandise is sold in good faith ; nor is it there received 
with humility. Thoughts of retreat from the world do not 
enter hearts from human motives ; on the contrary, nothing 
makes minds so rebellious as preachments against their 
grain. This one had precisely that effect ; and as the queen 
received no satisfaction from her answer or her conduct, the 
displeasure increased on her side, and Madame de Che- 
vreuse, aware that the good-will of the queen was lessening 
towards her every day, was not surprised when at last she 
received an order to go to Tours or to one of her country- 

She left the Court and was several days in her own house ; 
but, unable to stay quietly in retreat, she started in disguise, 
with Mademoiselle de Chevreuse, her daughter, intending to 
go to England, but was taken ill and remained in the island 
of Guernsey, where she suffered much misery. From there 
she went to Flanders, where the poor Due de Lorraine, ban- 
ished as he was, received her most kindly for the second 
time, and assisted her much. Cardinal Mazarin said, to 


excuse himself for her dismissal, that she had too much 
love for Spain, and wanted so urgently to have peace made 
for the advantage of Spaniards that he could never acquire 
her friendship. 

I have heard it said, by those who knew her intimately 
that no one ever understood so well the interests of all 
princes, or talked of them better, or had more capacity to 
disentangle great affairs; but it never seemed to me from 
her conduct that her ideas were as great as her reputation. 
As she had intelligence and experience among foreigners it 
is to be believed, without saying too much in her favour, 
that she may have been capable of giving advice as to the 
peace ; but we may also say of her with justice that those 
who examined what seemed good in her found many defects. 
She was vague in speech, and much occupied by chimeras 
which her inclination for intrigue suggested to her. It is 
also to be presumed that her judgments were not always 
regulated by reason, but that her passions contributed to 
form them. The queen and her minister had some cause 
therefore to fear her. I heard her say of herself (one day 
when I was praising her for having played a part in all the 
great affairs which had happened in Europe) that ambition 
had never touched her heart, and that pleasure alone had 
led her ; that is to say, she had been interested in the affairs 
of the world solely in relation to those she loved. 

In the person of Madame de Hautefort we shall now 
[1644] see the fate of the whole group of "the Importants" 
accomplished. The queen had quitted the Louvre, where 
her apartment did not please her, and had taken up her 
abode in the Palais-Koyal, which Cardinal Eichelieu when 
dying had bequeathed to the late king. In the beginning 
of her residence there she was very ill with a dreadful jaun- 
dice, considered by the doctors to come solely from vexa- 


tions and sadness. The vexations she received from the 
many complaints made against her government troubled 
her; the management of public affairs brought her much 
embarrassment; and the pain she felt in being forced to 
cause unhappiness made so great an impression on her mind 
that her body, sharing these sufferings, felt them too much. 
Her sadness being dissipated after a while, and her illness 
also, she determined to think of nothing but enjoying the 
rest she gave herself by laying upon her minister the cares 
and the business of the State, believing that henceforth she 
would be as happy as she was' powerful. 

Madame de Hautefort, who had never been able to con- 
quer the hatred she felt for Cardinal Mazarin, was the only 
person who now troubled the calm of the queen's soul, not 
only because she could not endure the minister, but because 
her self-sufficient mind, turning to piety, began to take up 
sentiments that made her stern, rather annoying, and too 
critical. All that the queen did displeased her ; and as she 
still retained something of her old familiarity with her, she 
was constantly saying rough things and showing plainly 
that she did not approve of her conduct in any way. The 
queen could not endure this behaviour, and the cardinal, who 
desired the dismissal of the lady, did not fail to embitter the 
queen's mind against her. So that her lectures on gener- 
osity were considered to be tacit reproaches ; and such con- 
duct, lacking all prudence, caused her finally to lose the 
good graces of one who, up to that time, had treated her as 
a dear friend. 

One day in the year 1644, having, as usual, had the 
honour of passing the evening with the queen up to mid- 
night, we left Madame de Hautefort talking with the 
princess in perfect freedom and with the pleasure that her 
presence and the favour she did us in allowing us to be 

VOL. I. 7 


with, her always gave us. The queen was just about to go 
to bed and had only her last prayer to say when we left her 
and retired, Mademoiselle de Beaumont, the Commander 
de Jars, my sister, and myself. At this moment Madame 
de Hautefort, always thinking of doing good, supported 
(while they were removing the queen's shoes and stockings) 
the application of one of her women who spoke in favour 
of an old gentleman, long her servant, who needed some 
favour. Madame de Hautefort, not finding the queen very 
willing to help him, said, making her meaning plain by 
disdainful smiles, that she ought not to forget her old 

The queen, who was waiting for an occasion to dismiss 
her, contrary to her usual gentleness took fire at this, and 
said, much displeased and very angry, that she was tired 
of her reprimands and very much dissatisfied with the 
manner in which she behaved to her. As she said those 
important words she threw herself into her bed and ordered 
her to close the curtains and say no more to her. Madame 
de Hautefort, astounded at this thunderbolt, fell upon her 
knees and, clasping her hands, called God to witness her 
innocence and the sincerity of her intentions, protesting 
to the queen that she believed she had never failed in 
serving her, or in her duty to her. She went to her room 
after that, deeply moved by the incident, and I may say 
much afflicted. The next day the queen sent her word 
to leave the palace and take with her her sister, Made- 
moiselle d'Escars, who had always been in service with the 

I was never more astonished than when I heard in the 
morning, at my waking, this history of what had happened 
in the short time after we had left Madame de Hautefort 
with the queen, which had brought such results upon her. 


It may be said in her defence that her good intentions 
made her excusable; but the best things are on a level 
with the worst when they are not wisely done, and virtue 
taken askew has often caused as much evil as its contrary. 
As I respected hers, though I saw its imprudence, I went 
to see her in her chamber. She seemed to me fairly strong 
under her misfortune if misfortune it is to leave a Court. 
After a conversation of an hour, during which she justified 
herself to me as best she could, I went to find the queen, to 
whom I related the visit I had just paid, excusing the lady 
with as much judgment as possible. 

The queen, with feeling, did me the honour to say that 
I was wrong not to enter into her just reasons for com- 
plaint; that I hardly knew Madame de Hautefort and 
already my kindness made me excuse her, though I ought 
to see very plainly that she was to blame. Besides these 
reproaches to me, she said to Beringhen, shortly after, that 
she was sorry to see me so quickly engage in friendship 
with Madame de Hautefort, having but lately returned 
to Court, and that I ought to have no better friend than 

~ This complaint was very kind, coming from a great queen 
who certainly, if I may dare to say so, was my best friend 
and the one I loved most truly. But as the heart cannot 
be seen, the queen was for some time rather cold to me, 
and that did me some harm with the minister, who believed 
I was against his interests because I seemed to take the 
part of a dismissed person who was so opposed to him. 
Nevertheless, I had entered no cabal, my intentions were 
upright; pity alone had made me act^-J 

I did not refrain from returning that evening to Madame 
de Hautefort, who, from having wished to seem strong, 
had so restrained her grief and weakness within her heart 


that she nearly died of them. Her illness was so violent 
that she could not leave her room, in spite of the commands 
she had received. We found her Commander de Jars, 
Mile, de Beaumont, my sister, and myself in a pitiable 
state. Her heart, which had not sighed all day, renouncing 
at last the pride with which she strove to fill it, was now 
so choked, so wrung, so abandoned to her resentment that 
I can truly say I never saw anything like it. She sobbed 
in such a manner that it was easy to see she had much 
loved the queen, that her dismissal was hard to bear, and 
that she had not foreseen it. 

We consoled her as best we could; and heartily wished 
that the queen was capable of softening, and forgiving her. 
But the next day, being rather better, and relieved by two 
bleedings which they had to give her during the night, she 
left the Palais-Eoyal to the regret of every one. For, as 
disgrace without wrong-doing has this property, that it kills 
envy in the souls of enemies and moves them readily from 
hatred to pity, so it increases friendship in friends who are 
sufficiently honourable persons to love generosity and to 
excuse faults that result from a virtue so remarkable. 

This illustrious unfortunate shut herself up at first in a 
convent, where she remained some time. Then she left it 
and lived in great retirement, seeing only her nearest friends. 
Some years later she married very highly and became a 
duchess and mare'chale of France, having wedded M. de 
Schomberg, a man sufficiently honourable to prefer merit 
to favour. I dared no longer go to see her, because when 
I spoke of her to the queen and asked, as a favour, that she 
would not think it ill if I went, she answered coldly that 
I was free, and could do as I wished. I told her, kissing 
her hand, that I should never wish to do anything that dis- 
pleased her; and owing all to her and nothing to Madame 


de Hautefort but civility and esteem, I pledged myself not 
to see her again. The Commander de Jars, who was much 
more her friend than I was, and never failed in heart to 
his friends, did as I did, and saw her no more until after 
her marriage. 



AT the beginning of the regency the queen had established 
a council of conscience, at which were decided all matters 
concerning benefices, the choice of bishops and abbe's, and 
the distribution of pensions that she wished to give to the 
glory of God and the advantage of religion. This council 
existed as long as the minister, seeing his authority thwarted, 
remained under some restraint; but as soon as he had ac- 
quired complete dominion over the queen's mind, the council 
of conscience went off in smoke; he wished to dispose as 
he pleased, without any contradiction, of the benefices as 
of everything else, in order that those to whom the queen 
gave them should be friends of his, without caring much 
whether they were true servants of God, saying that he 
supposed all priests were that. 

This council consequently served only to exclude those 
he did not wish to favour; and a few years later it was 
abolished altogether because Pere Vincent [Saint-Vincent 
de Paul] who was at its head, being a man of single mind, 
very devout and pious, who had never dreamed of winning 
the good graces of the Court people, whose manners and 
ways he knew not, was easily made, in spite of the queen's 
esteem for him, the ridicule of the Court; for it is almost 
impossible that humility, penitence, and gospel simplicity 
should accord with the ambition, vanity, and self-interest 
that reign there. She who had placed him in that position 
would gladly have maintained him. This is why she still 


had several long conversations with him on the scruples 
which continued in her mind; but she lacked firmness on 
this occasion, and finally let things go as it pleased her 
minister, not thinking herself as able as he, or as much so 
as she really was in many matters ; which made it easy for 
him to persuade her to do what he chose, and to bring her 
round, after some resistance, to things he had resolved 
\ upon. 

I know nevertheless that, in the choice of bishops espe- 
cially, she had great pain in yielding, and much more when 
she recognized that she had followed his advice too easily 
in these important matters, which she did not always do, and 
never without privately consulting Pere Vincent, as long 
as he lived, or others whom she thought men of worth. 
But she was sometimes cruelly deceived by the false virtue 
of those who sought the prelacy, for whom the pious persons 
on whom she relied to examine them answered perhaps 
too lightly. However, in spite of the indifference her min- 
ister seemed to show on this subject, God so favoured this 
princess that the greater number of those who were raised 
to that dignity during her regency did their duty and ful- 
filled their functions with exemplary sanctity. 

The queen had appointed to the finances the president 
de Bailleul, a good man and a judge of great integrity, but 
too tame and gentle for that office, where justice is not the 
chief necessary quality. It was important for Cardinal 
Mazarin to change him for some one less precise but much 
harsher than he. He did not wish to turn him out at once, 
but he put d'Emery under him as controller-general with 
power attached to that office, so that little by little he could 
install as superintendent of finances a man who was his 
own creature and over whom he had absolute control, 
which happened not long after. 


At the same time the queen, who desired to remove 
Chavigny from the council, where the cardinal was not over 
pleased to have him exercise the office of secretary of state 
for foreign affairs (for which he was very capable and through 
which, having the management of the great matters that 
came before it, he became necessarily a part of the ministry), 
ordered him to resign and sell his office to the Comte de 
Brienne, who would then sell the one he held in the king's 
household to Duplessis-Gue'ne'gaud. As the queen respected 
de Brienne not only for his integrity but also on account of 
her friendship for his wife, she gave him two hundred thou- 
sand francs towards paying for the office, which was sold to 
him for five hundred thousand. 

The cardinal having no longer any one in the council to 
cause him jealousy, the Comte de Brienne making no diffi- 
culty in signing all the despatches they sent to him, nothing 
remained but the office of secretary of state for war, then 
held by des Noyers who had been dismissed by the late 
king. This the minister made him give in commission to 
Le Tellier, 1 whom he had known in Italy, and who soon had 
the full title by the death of des Noyers. He has since 
never lacked offices, having been very important through- 
out our period, much liked by the queen, and well regarded 
by the minister ; and we shall see him play his part in very 
extraordinary matters. In this way the cardinal had the 
gratification of filling for himself the offices of the four 
secretaries of state, the titular secretaries being merely his 

After relating thus the state of the Court I think it is 
right to say something personal of the queen. She waked 
usually between ten and eleven o'clock, on days of devotion 
at nine, and she always made a long prayer before calling 

1 Michel Le Tellier, father of the Marquis de Louvois. 


those who slept near her. As soon as her waking was 
announced her principal officers came to pay their court to 
her, and often other persons entered, especially certain 
ladies who came to tell her of alms and charities to be done 
in Paris, in all France, and even in foreign parts. Her lib- 
eralities at all times were great, extended usually to what- 
ever concerned piety, and her attention to all claims on her 
protection and justice never relaxed. 

Men were not excluded from her audiences. During 
these early hours she gave them to several, entering into 
the business they brought before her according as she 
deemed it necessary. The king never missed, nor did Mon- 
sieur, coming to see her in the morning; not leaving her 
again till they went to bed, except for their meals and their 
games, their youth not permitting them to eat with her, as 
they did later. 

After half an hour's conversation, and those who desired 
to speak with her having had their audience, she rose, put 
on a dressing-gown, and, after making a second prayer, 
ate her breakfast with great appetite. Her breakfast was 
always good, for her health was admirable. After her 
bouillon she was served with cutlets, sausages, and boiled 
bread. Usually she ate a little of all, and dined on no less. 
Then she took her chemise, which the king gave her, kissing 
her tenderly ; and this custom lasted a long time. After 
putting on her petticoat, she took a wrapper and a black 
hongreline, and in that state she heard mass very devoutly ; 
and that sacred action ended, she returned to her toilet. 
At this there was unparalleled pleasure in seeing her do 
her hair and dress herself. She was skilful, and her beauti- 
ful hands thus employed were the admiration of those who 
saw them. She had the handsomest hair in the world, of a 
light chestnut, very long and in great quantity, which she 


preserved for a long time, years having no power to destroy 
its beauty. She dressed with care and the choiceness per- 
missible to those who desire to look well without luxury, 
without gold or silver or paint or any extravagant fashion. 
It was nevertheless easy to see, in spite of the modesty of 
her clothes, that she could be influenced by a little vanity. 

After the death of the late king she ceased to wear rouge, 
which increased the whiteness and nicety of her skin. 
Instead of diminishing her beauty, this made it the more 
esteemed, and public approbation soon obliged all ladies to 
follow her example. She took at this time a habit of keep- 
ing her room now and then for a day or two to rest, and see 
only such persons as were most familiar with her and least 
likely to importune her. On other days she readily gave 
audience to all who asked for it, whether on general busi- 
ness or on private matters. As she had good sense and good 
judgment she satisfied all by her answers, given with kind- 
ness ; and those who loved her could have wished that she 
had always acted by her own ideas as she at first intended, 
to avoid the blame she saw given to the late king for aban- 
doning his authority to Cardinal Eichelieu, often saying at 
that time to her servants that she should never do likewise. 
But, unhappily for those who were about her, her resolutions 
were weakened by a desire for repose, and by the trouble she 
found in the multiplicity of business affairs inseparable from 
the government of a great kingdom. In course of time, as 
she became more lazy, she learned by experience that God 
has not placed kings on thrones to do nothing, but to en- 
dure some at least of the miseries which are attached to all 
sorts and conditions of life. 

The queen did not often dine in public served by her 
officers, but nearly always in her little cabinet served by 
her women. The king and Monsieur kept her company 


and were seldom absent. After her dinner she retired to 
her own room to be a short time alone; often giving an 
hour to God in devout reading, which she did in her oratory. 
After which she held her "circle," or else she went out, 
either to see nuns or pay her devotions ; and on returning 
she gave sometime to the princesses and ladies of quality 
who came to pay their court to her. 

After the Due d'Orle'ans returned to Court he came 
daily to see her. The Prince de Conde* and the Due 
d'Enghien also came occasionally. But as, at the beginning 
of the regency, they were not yet in the little secret council, 
as they were later, they retired early. The Due d'Orle'ans 
stayed late, and Cardinal Mazarin never missed this fine 
evening hour, during which the conversation went on 
publicly between the queen, the princes, and the minister. 
At this period, therefore, the Court was a very large one. 
After this the queen retired to her private rooms. The Due 
d'Orle'ans then had a private interview and returned to 
the Luxembourg, leaving Cardinal Mazarin alone with the 
queen. The minister stayed sometimes an hour, sometimes 
more. The doors of the rooms remained open after the 
departure of the Due d'Orle'ans, and the Court people, as- 
sembled in the little chamber of the Palais-Royal adjoining 
the cabinet, remained there talking until the " little council " 
was over. When it ended the queen, shortly after, bade 
good-night to all who composed what is called the great 
world. The crowd of great seigneurs and courtiers remained 
in the grand cabinet, and it was there that took place, no 
doubt, all that gallantry and passionate intrigues can pro- 
duce. A few men, with four or five persons of our sex, had 
the honour of remaining with the queen at all hours when 
she was in private. 

When she had bid good-night, and Cardinal Mazarin had 


left her, she entered her oratory and remained a full hour 
in prayer; after which she came out to supper at eleven 
o'clock. Her supper finished, we ate the rest of it, without 
order or ceremony, using, for all convenience, her napkin and 
the remains of her bread ; and although this meal was ill- 
arranged, it was not disagreeable, through the quality of the 
persons present, and because of the jests and the conversa- 
tion of the queen, who told us good things and laughed 
much because the women who served her, and who were not 
the most polite in the world, tried to rob us of all they 
could to keep it for the morrow. After this feast we fol- 
lowed her into her cabinet, where a gay and lively conver- 
sation continued till midnight or one o'clock; and then, 
after she was undressed, and often when she was in bed and 
ready to go to sleep, we left her to do likewise. 

We followed this life punctually for several years, even 
during the little journeys to Fontainebleau and Saint- 
Grermain, until the civil war and the siege of Paris, when 
the troubles became so great as to interrupt its system I 
mean as regards our attendance, but not as regards the 
queen, for she was the most regular person in the world in 
all her habits of life. She held a council Mondays and 
Thursdays, and on those days she was beset by crowds of 
people. She fasted on all appointed days and, in spite of 
her appetite, all through Lent. When in Paris, she went 
every Saturday to mass at Notre-Dame, and usually spent 
the remainder of that day in resting; taking the greatest 
pleasure in getting away from the crowd that surrounded 
her, but which, towards the last, grew accustomed not to 
importune her as much then as on other days. She took 
the communion regularly on Sundays and feast-days. On 
the evening before the great feasts she went to sleep at the 
Val-de-Gra"ce, where she resolved to build a new monastery, 


finer than the one already there, and to add to it a church 
worthy of a queen, mother of a great king. She gave this 
in charge of Tuboeuf. There she frequently remained several 
days, retired from the world, taking pleasure in conversations 
with the nuns. She sought the most saintly, accommodating 
herself to those who had but medium merit ; but whenever 
they reached her esteem she honoured them with friendship. 
Good sermons from the sternest preachers were those that 
pleased her most. She went sometimes, but rarely, to visit 
the prisons disguised as a servant, and, to my knowledge, 
she one day followed the Princesse de Conde" for that purpose. 
She had a waiting-maid, a pious and devout woman, who 
in the first years of her regency was shut up with her every 
evening in her oratory. The whole duty of that person was 
to inform the queen of the daily needs, public and private, 
of the poor, and to receive from her the money to relieve them. 
She was always touched by things she thought her duty. I 
have seen her during the war which happened later, when 
she had no money, sell her diamond ear-rings (which she 
had had very curiously made) to give money to those who 
were suffering by it. 

The queen had not yet renounced all the pleasures she 
had formerly liked and which she thought innocent. Her 
amusements were all moderate ; she loved nothing ardently. 
She once liked balls, but had lost the liking with her youth, 
and her long residence at Saint-Germain had accustomed 
her to do without such things. But she went to the theatre 
half -hidden behind one of us, whom she made to sit forward 
in the box, not willing, during her mourning, to appear 
publicly in the place she would have occupied in other days. 
This amusement was not disagreeable to her. Corneille, 
the illustrious poet of our epoch, had enriched the stage 
with noble plays, the moral of which could serve as a lesson 


to correct the unruliness of human passions, and among the 
vain and dangerous occupations of the Court this at least 
was not among the worst. 

The queen was grave and discreet in all her ways of act- 
ing and speaking; she was judicious and very secret as to 
the confidences her familiar servants ventured to make to 
her. She was liberal by her own impulse; and what she 
gave she gave with a good grace ; but she often failed to 
give for want of reflection, and it was necessary to employ 
too much help to obtain her benefits. This defect, which 
was not in her heart nor in her will, came from her per- 
mitting insensibly her resolutions to be formed by the will 
of others whose advice she respected, and her attendants 
suffered in consequence. She gave in profusion to certain 
persons who had the power to persuade her in their favour ; 
persons who by constant application to their own fortune 
found means to make it. 

She did not like to read, and knew very little ; but she 
had intelligence, and an easy, accommodating, and agree- 
able mind. Her conversation was serious and free both; 
those she esteemed found great charms in her because she 
was secret, and always glad to enter into the feelings and 
interests of those who opened their hearts to her ; and this 
good treatment made a great impression on the souls of 
those who loved her. I have spoken elsewhere of her 
beauty ; I shall only say here that, being agreeable in per- 
son, gentle and polite in her actions, and familiar with 
those who had the honour to approach her, she had only to 
follow her natural inclinations and show herself as she 
really was, to please every one. / But, in spite of her virtuous 
inclinations, it was easy for the cardinal, making use of 
"reasons of State," to change her feelings and make her 
capable of doing harsh things to those she was accustomed 


to treat well. In the beginning of her regency she was 
much praised for her kindness, and great hopes were founded 
on its effects. But when she was seen to dismiss those she 
had formerly relied on she was loudly condemned. Many 
publications were issued to decry a goodness which the 
people had believed in, and with reason. But this belief 
was held for some time in the rank of things doubtful by 
those who were now not prosperous enough to be content. 

At the end of the year from the king's death [May, 1644], 
she quitted her deep mourning, which had made her seem 
beautiful, and the age of forty, so dreadful to our sex, did 
not prevent her from being still agreeable. She had a fresh- 
ness and plumpness which placed her in the ranks of the 
handsomest women of her kingdom, and we saw her, as time 
went on, increase in years without losing these advantages. 

At the beginning of this year [1644] preparations were 
made for war. The Due d'Orle'ans went to command the 
army of Flanders, and the Due d'Enghien [the great Conde*], 
that of Germany. We shall see the first conquer several 
fortresses, and the second defeat the enemy with glory and 

President Barillon and several others of the principal 
parliament leaders were not satisfied because they were less 
considered than they hoped to be. On the first occasion 
that offered for a mutiny they took it ; they began by com- 
plaining that the chancellor quashed in the council all the 
decrees of the parliament, and they loudly complained of 
their president, who seemed to consent with too much com- 
pliance. They assembled and made speeches against the 
royal authority, censured all things, and made the Court 
apprehensive of coming disorders and quarrels. 

The day after this assembly [May 22, 1644], a command 
was sent to President Barillon, President Gayant, and others 


of the cabal to retire. President Barillon was a worthy man 
and much respected ; he had served the queen in the parlia- 
ment, where he had much influence and reputation. The 
" Importants " were his friends ; he and they had been ser- 
vitors of the queen, and were so no longer. He was sent to 
Pignerol, to the great displeasure of many worthy persons, 
and he died there a year later regretted by every one. I 
have heard the queen say that during the life of the late 
king she had had no servant more faithful than this presi- 
dent, but that as soon as she was regent he abandoned her 
and disapproved of all her actions. 

Sometime after this dismissal, others of the parliament, 
rebelling at the rigour they declared had been shown to 
their company, held several assemblies. They determined 
to see the queen and complain of the wrong she had done 
them, and they resolved to go to her without asking for an 
audience. At this time, though Monsieur had not yet 
started for the army, he was at one of his country-houses, 
and Cardinal Mazarin had gone to make a little journey and 
meet Cardinal de Valengay, who was coming from Eome 
but was forbidden to enter Paris. 

The queen was in bed, alone in the Palais-Royal ; I had 
the honour of being with her. They came to tell her that 
the parliament was coming in a body, on foot, to make re- 
monstrances about the affair of President Barillon. It was 
easy to see that the object of this assembly was to stir up 
the people ; and the persons who first gave notice of their 
coining seemed to me frightened. The queen, who had a 
firm soul and was not easily startled, showed no uneasiness. 
She sent for President de Bailleul, superintendent of 
finances, rather liked in his corps ; and, not willing to close 
the doors as some advised, she ordered the parliament to be 
received under the arcade which separated the two arches. 


There she sent them word by the captain of her guards and 
the superintendent that she did not think it right they 
should come to her without her permission and without 
asking for an audience ; that they must now return whence 
they started, for, having taken medicine, she could not see 

To their shame they had to do as she commanded; and 
the queen laughed at me because these old dotards had 
frightened me so much that I advised her to send for the 
Mare'chal de Gramont, major of her regiment of guards, so 
as to have some defenders if the populace should take part 
hi the affair. A few days later an audience was granted on 
their demand; and their harangues, which demanded the 
release of President Barillon, were not listened to as re- 
garded him, but other points of no great weight were 
granted. After this first commotion, the parliament re- 
mained for some time rather peaceable, ruminating their 
designs to infringe on the royal authority, which appeared 
a few years later. 

When summer weather invited the princes to leave the 
pleasures of the Court for the toils of wars, the queen 
thought it time to seek cool airs out of Paris. She wished 
to pass the great heat at Ruel with the Duchesse d'Aiguillon. 
That house is very convenient through its vicinity to Paris, 
and very agreeable from the beauty of its gardens and the 
number of its streams, which are very natural. The queen 
took pleasure in the place, where her enemy Cardinal Riche- 
lieu had so long received the adoration of all France. It 
was not from that motive, however, that she chose it; she 
had too noble a soul to wish to trouble the repose of the 
dead by so petty a triumph. It was, on the contrary, to 
oblige his niece, the Duchesse d'Aiguillon, and give her 
marks of royal protection against the Prince de Conde", with 

VOL. I. 8 


whom she had great differences to settle. It is to be sup- 
posed, however, that the queen, acting from generosity, had 
a certain joy in finding herself able to do good by her mere 
presence to those whom she believed had done her much evil. 
She took great pleasure in her evening walks during the 
time she was in this delightful place, and in all the innocent 
pleasures that its beauty and convenience afforded. But it 
pleased the people of Paris to rise against certain taxes 
which were about to be placed on houses, so that the king 
and herself departed at the end of six weeks in great haste 
to pacify them, and the whole Court followed them very 
willingly to Paris. 

One day during the queen's stay at Euel, as she was driv- 
ing in a caleche through the gardens she noticed Voiture, 
walking along hi a revery. That man had wit, and by the 
charm of his conversation he was the amusement of the 
ruelles of those ladies who make it then- boast to receive 
the best company. The queen, to please the Princesse de 
Conde" who was seated beside her, asked him what he was 
thinking of. Voiture, without much reflection, made some 
burlesque verses in answer to the queen, which were amus- 
ing and bold. She was not offended by the jest ; hi fact, she 
thought the verses pretty, and kept them for a long time in 
her room. She did me the honour to give them to me after- 
wards, and, from the things I have already told about 
her life, it is easy to understand them. They were as 

follows : 

" I 'm thinking how that destiny 
After so many unjust ills, 
Has justly corne to crown you 
With splendour, honours, glory, 
But that you were plus heureuse 
As you were in other days, 
When I '11 not say amoureuse 
Though my rhyme demands it 


" I 'm thinking, too, how this poor Love, 
Who always lent you arms, 
Is banished from your Court 
With arrows, bow, and charms ; 
And what then will it profit me 
To spend my life beside you, 
If you can choose to treat so ill 
Those who have so well served you. 

" I 'm thinking (for we poets 
Do think extravagantly) 
Of what, in your present mood, 
You would do if here before you, 
In this place and at this moment, 
Came the Duke of Buckingham ; 
Which would be the worst dismissed, 
The duke or Father Vincent." 

I must end this trip to Euel with this trifle, and return to 
Paris to resume the gravity and seriousness required for that 
great city. One of our kings [Henri III.] has said that the 
head of this kingdom was always too big ; that it was full of 
humours injurious to the rest of its members, and that a 
bleeding now and then was necessary. This time, however, 
the presence of the king and queen pacified everything; it 
was only a little blaze of straw, which did not in any 
way prevent the Court from enjoying in peace the comforts 
and pleasures that are ever to be found in that agreeable 

Pope Urbain VIII. died in July, 1644. He had held the 
Holy See for many years with the reputation of an able 
man and a great politician. The Cardinals Barberini, his 
nephews, who were protectors of France, were left masters 
of the election of his successor. Several partisans of Spain 
who sought to be raised to that dignity were opposed, par- 
ticularly the Cardinal Pamphilo, who seemed to have more 
claim to it than any other; but finally, the king did not 


prevail; the Barberinis served France very ill on this 

In this same month, the Queen of England, whom her 
rebellious people had driven into a little corner of her king- 
dom to give birth to her last child, was forced, only seven- 
teen days later, to escape to France to avoid what she had to 
fear from the hatred of her subjects, who were at open war 
with their king, and wished to take her prisoner, perhaps to 
begin on her the lack of respect they owed to royalty. This 
princess, after being the most fortunate and most opulent of 
all the queens of Europe, with three crowns upon her head, 
was reduced to such a state that in order to lie-in it was 
necessary that our queen should send her Madame Peronne, 
her own midwife, and even the slightest articles that were 
necessary to her condition. 

She had been taken to Oxford by the king her husband, 
who left her there; but having reason to fear that his 
enemies would besiege her, she started hastily for Exeter, 
where she gave birth to her child in the poverty I have just 
represented. She was ill with a serious malady which pre- 
ceded her pregnancy, and in no state to help her husband. 
In this extremity she was forced to take shelter from the 
dangers with which her person and health were threatened. 
She wished to come to her native country, to drink the 
waters at Bourbon and find safety for her life which was 
in danger. 

In France she was received with joy. The populace, 
regarding her as the sister, daughter, and aunt of their 
kings, respected her ; the queen was delighted to help her 
in her troubles and to soften them as much as she could; 
although she had never been well-treated by her, who had, 
on the contrary, caused her many griefs while still in France. 
For the princess, being supported by the queen-mother [Marie 

'(-ft/ rieffia, <^/rta. 



de' Medici] who did not like the queen, did her those little 
malicious things which are great ills to those who receive 
them at certain times, but are not capable of altering friend- 
ship as soon as they are things of the past. The King of 
England had contributed much to soften these dislikes ; for 
after his marriage he took pleasure in all opportunities of 
obliging our queen, particularly in the person of Madame 
de Chevreuse during her first exile. So that when the 
Queen of England arrived in France, the queen had a fine 
occasion to return in person to that afflicted princess all that 
she owed to the King of England; and the two princesses 
having changed in feeling, the one was truly glad to oblige 
the other, and she who was thus well received and well 
treated showed the greatest gratitude. 

The Queen of England remained at Bourbon three months 
endeavouring to recover her health, and our queen offered all 
that depended on the king and herself. I had the honour of 
approaching this unhappy princess familiarly, and I heard 
from her the beginning and end of their misfortunes, for she 
did me the honour to relate them to me in that solitary place, 
where peace and rest reigned without disturbance. I left her 
at Bourbon, where the queen, not contenting herself with the 
offers she had made to her, which were only compliments, 
sent her all the money necessary for her subsistence, also 
great sums which she conveyed to the king her husband. 
But as that unhappy prince, who was only too good, was 
destined to serve as a formidable warning to all kings of 
the weakness of their power, and of the pleasure Fortune 
sometimes takes hi playing with crowns and overthrowing 
the best-established thrones, taking them and returning 
them at her caprice, all was useless to him. 

As the memory of King Henri IV. is dear to Frenchmen, 
the Queen of England, his granddaughter, was constantly fol- 


lowed by a great crowd of people running to see her. She 
was very ill and much changed ; her misfortunes had given 
her such sadness, and her mind was so filled with her sor- 
rows, that she wept continually, which shows what the suffer- 
ings of soul and body can do, for by nature this princess was 
gay and talked pleasantly. But now, in the grievous state 
to which she was reduced, she said one day to the great 
physician Mayerne, who attended her, that she felt her mind 
weakening, and feared that she might become crazy. To which, 
as she told me, he answered brusquely, " You need not fear 
it, madame, for you are that already." She certainly found 
some remedy for her bodily ills in France, her native coun- 
try, the air and the baths of which were beneficial to her, 
but it needed much time to soften her other woes. I shall 
tell elsewhere how. she seemed to us when we saw her at 

The campaign of the Due d' Enghien increased his reputa- 
tion to a dazzling glory, and he fought a battle at Fribourg 
which will surely hold a great place in history; but as 
chance willed that I did not remark its particulars, and 
do not find them in my notes, I shall say no more about it. 

Elisabeth of France, Queen of Spain, died at the begin- 
ning of this whiter, a worthy daughter of Henri le Grand, 
and most deserving of the esteem that Europe felt for her. 
She was regretted throughout its whole extent, and her 
people, who felt a great admiration for her, were afflicted. 
The king, her husband, had not always loved her as she 
deserved, because he was too gallant, not to say worse. But 
before she died he was beginning to recognize her noble 
qualities and her capacity. He left her for a time to govern 
his kingdom, which she did with much glory, so that he re- 
gretted her greatly. I have heard my late mother (who had 
the honour to know her on her return from Spain and before 


the princess left France) say that she was beautiful and 
agreeable, and glad of the prospect of being queen of so 
grand a kingdom. She lived there some years pleasantly. 
The Prince of Spain was handsome and well-made, and 
they loved each other. It is even said that the king 
her father-in-law, finding her beautiful, put off joining 
them, with a notion of taking her for himself. I have 
since been told that this was only true in that he loved 
her as his daughter, and very tenderly. But the prince 
her husband, after he became king [Philip IV.] had 
so many mistresses of all kinds that, from the jealousy 
she had reason to feel, her whole life became a torture 
as keen as it was long and sorrowful. She had reason to 
complain, but her complaints were always useless, and 
though she was as chaste as he was voluptuous, the cus- 
toms of Spain were rigorous against her. 1 

The queen, wishing to render to the memory of this 
illustrious queen, doubly her sister-in-law, all that was due 
to her as a daughter of France, ordered, according to custom, 
a service to be performed with the magnificence that was 
due to so great a princess. On such occasions it often 
happens that precedence, which is not well-regulated in 
France, produces bitter quarrels. Mademoiselle [daughter 
of Gaston, Due d'0rle"ans] as the granddaughter of Henri 
IV., claimed that there was much distinction to be made 
between herself and the Princesse de Conde". On the 
other hand, the Due d'Enghien, wishing to sustain his 
rank and the grandeur his birth and glory gave him, de- 
manded of the queen that the duchess, his wife, should 
follow Mademoiselle on all occasions, declaring that the 
latter was only first princess of the blood. The queen, 

1 Her beautiful portrait by Rubens will be found in Brantome's " Book 
of the Ladies," belonging to these " Historical Memoirs." TB. 


paying at that time little attention to the interests of 
Mademoiselle, without considering that she was then in pos- 
session of certain prerogatives which created a difference be- 
tween her family and that of Conde", granted what he asked. 
Madame de Longueville [the Due d'Enghien's sister] who 
had lost her rank by marrying the Due de Longueville and 
had taken a patent from the king under which she preserved 
it, also wished to use this occasion to re-establish herself 
openly in the rights her Bourbon blood gave her ; she there- 
fore claimed to follow the Duchesse d'Enghien and do as she 

Mademoiselle, being warned of the designs against her, 
resolved not to go to the service of her aunt, the Queen 
of Spain. When the time came to start, she said she 
was ill and could not leave her room. The queen, as 
soon as she knew what the difficulty was, felt displeased ; 
she sent her orders to go, and complained to the Due 
d'Orl^ans. That prince blamed his daughter, and disapproved 
of her proceedings, so that Mademoiselle found herself de- 
serted, not only by the queen but by her father, whose 
grandeur she was sustaining by maintaining her own rank. 
But not being able to hold out against such rough attack, 
she yielded, against her will, to force, went to Notre-Dame, 
and exposed herself to the pretensions of those who, having 
the honour to be her relations, wished to equal her. On start- 
ing, she had ordered that two persons should bear her train, 
but as soon as the Due d'Enghien saw this, he signed to one 
of his suite to join the person who was already bearing the 
train of his wife, whom he led by the hand. Madame de 
Longueville, seeing that Mademoiselle, by seating herself in 
the canon's chairs in the choir, intended to put an empty 
place between them, pushed the Duchesse d'Enghien, her 
sister-in-law, and they both took the seats next to her 


Mademoiselle was keenly affronted by this treatment. 
She wept, and made much talk about it ; representing that 
she possessed many marks of distinction between herself 
and the Princesse de Conde", who was bound on all occa- 
sions to give way to her, such, for instance, as having a 
dais in the king's house, a mailed coach [carrosse cloue], foot- 
men with their hose turned over, and the privilege of giving 
the princesses of the blood chairs without backs in her own 
house, while she was in an armchair. Her anger was, however, 
crushed down by that of the queen against her. It was pro- 
posed to put her in a convent for a few days' punishment, 
but instead of bearing her trifling disgrace with noble indif- 
ference, she had recourse to the Princesse de Conde", or rather, 
she accepted the offer the princess made her to heal matters 
with the queen, who blamed her extremely. The Due 
d'Enghien gave as his reasons that she ought to be satisfied 
with the prerogatives she had, without always pretending to 
fresh ones, and that the advantages she enjoyed were all she 
ought to have. Monsieur bethought himself later that his 
daughter was right. He then grew angry, complained to the 
queen, and went and sulked for three days at Chambord. 
The queen, who had allowed the Due d'Enghien to do what 
he did, felt obliged, for the sake of, peace, to relieve him of 
all fault and take the blame on herself, so that finally, 
with a few excuses on her part, and a few compliments from 
the Due d'Enghien, the matter was pacified. 

The Queen of England came to Paris soon after this affair, 
having been three or four months at Bourbon. The queen 
went out of the city to receive her, with the king and the 
Due d'Anjou (the actual Monsieur). These two great prin- 
cesses embraced with much tenderness and friendship, and 
paid each other compliments which were not mere compli- 
ments. They took the English queen to lodge in the 


Louvre, which was then unoccupied ; and for a country-house 
they gave her Saint-Germain. As the king's affairs were in 
good condition and the wars had not yet ruined the royal 
finances, they gave her a pension of ten or twelve thousand 
crowns a month, so that in all things she had great reason to 
praise the queen. 

The Queen of England was much disfigured by the sever- 
ity of her illness and her misfortunes, no trace remaining 
of her past beauty. Her eyes were fine, her complexion 
admirable, and her nose well-shaped. There was some- 
thing so agreeable in her face that it made her beloved 
by every one, but she was thin and short ; her figure was 
even deformed, and her mouth, never handsome naturally, 
was now, from the thinness of her face, too large. I have 
seen her portraits, done in the days of her beauty, which 
show that she was very pleasing ; but as that beauty lasted 
but the space of a morning and left her before her midday, 
she was accustomed to declare that no woman could be 
handsome after twenty-two years of age. 

To complete the presentation of her such as I saw her, I 
must add that she had infinite wit, and a brilliant mind 
which pleased all spectators. She was agreeable in society, 
honourable, gentle, and easy ; living with those who had the 
honour to approach her without ceremony. Her tempera- 
ment inclined her to gaiety ; and even amid her tears, if it 
occurred to her to say something amusing, she would stop 
them to divert the company. The almost continual suffer- 
ing she endured gave her much gravity and contempt for 
life, which, to my thinking, made her more solid, more se- 
rious, more estimable than she might have been had she 
always been happy. She was naturally liberal ; and those 
who knew her in prosperity assured us she had exhausted 
her wealth in doing good to those she loved 


Her favourite, who, so the public said, had a share in 
the misfortunes of England, was a rather worthy man, of 
a gentle mind which seemed very narrow and more fitted 
for petty things than great ones. He had the fidelity 
towards her which ministers usually have; he wanted 
money, before all else, to meet his expenses, which were 
large. The princess no doubt had too much confidence 
in him, but it is true that he did not govern her abso- 
lutely ; she often had a will quite contrary to his, which 
she maintained as the absolute mistress. She supported 
her opinions with strong reasons ; but they were always 
accompanied with a charm, a raillery that pleased and 
corrected the signs of haughtiness and courage which 
she had shown in the principal actions of her life. She 
lacked the great and noble knowledge which is acquired 
by reading. Her misfortunes had repaired that defect, for 
grievous experience had given her capacity. We saw her 
in France lose the tottering crown she still wore, lose the 
king her husband by a dreadful death, and suffer with 
constancy the adversities it pleased God to send her. 

The cabinets of kings are stages on which are performed 
continually the plays that occupy the minds of the whole 
world. Some are simply comic, others are tragic, and their 
greatest events are caused by trifles. After speaking of 
the horrible effects of Fortune, and the indifference with 
which she scoffs at crowned heads, we should consider those 
produced by that mad passion of ambition, which is not 
content with intrigues of pleasure, but, mingling hi affairs 
more serious, never fails to create the greatest disorders 
when it masters the hearts of men. 


1645 1646. 

THE spring of this year having prompted the princes to 
go to the army, they started, giving every public sign of the 
impatience they felt to toil in war for the glory of France 
and the good of the State. The Due d'Orle'ans took com- 
mand of the army of Flanders, the Due d'Enghien that of 
Germany, while the queen spent a good part of the summer 
of this year in Paris. The Due d'Enghien, after having, 
as usual, carried alarm and terror into Germany, fought a 
battle at Nordlingen [August 3, 1645] which was one of 
his finest actions. I lost there two relations of my own: 
Lanquetot and Gre'monville, both honourable gentlemen. 
Their loss was sore to me, for, besides the relationship, they 
were friends to me, which has to be considered. The day 
that the news of the winning of this battle came, I was 
surprised as I returned from a walk in the Palais-Eoyal 
to see a great number of persons talking together in separate 
groups. The emotion that the love of country inspires in 
all hearts makes itself felt on such occasions. Some of my 
acquaintance came up to me to tell me that a battle was 
won, but also that a great many men were killed. The first 
feeling in all was joy, then followed fear, and each for him- 
self seemed already regretting a friend or relative dead. 

This consternation in others imparted itself to me, and 
though my affection for the queen was sufficiently strong 
not to fail in sharing the satisfaction that such great news 
would surely give her, the sorrow of families touched me, 


and my feelings were much divided. With these thoughts 
I went upstairs. Victories are the delight of sovereigns,; 
all the more because they taste their pleasures without 
deeply sharing the pain of private persons. It was not 
that the queen on such occasions did not seem to have 
much humanity and to regret men of merit, but in short, 
she was queen. 

The cardinal came at once to tell her the particulars of 
this great battle. When she saw him she went to meet 
him with a smiling, satisfied face. He received her by 
saying in a grave tone : " Madame, so many are dead that 
your Majesty can scarcely rejoice at this victory." Perhaps 
he spoke in this way to win the good graces of those present 
and to gain the reputation of being tender to his friends ; 
but whether the sentiment was natural to him or whether 
he took pains to affect it from policy, he deserves praise for>, 
it. A man who exercises virtue, whether it be by his will 
or from his inclination, does not fail in being estimable ; 
for motives are impenetrable, and it belongs to Him only 
who formed the human heart to know it and judge it. The j 
cardinal began with the name of the Marechal de Gramont, 
taken prisoner, at which he showed much regret ; and then 
he read to the queen the list of deaths; it was by that 
reading that I learned I had lost my two relatives and 
several of my friends whom I regretted much. 

While the princes of the blood were gaining almost con- 
tinual victories over the enemy [September, 1645] and 
France through its good fortune was making itself revered 
in all Europe, the queen was meditating how to find money 
to continue the war with the same glory as heretofore. She 
resolved to go before parliament to get certain edicts passed, 
considering that course the qiiickest remedy to apply to the 
wants of the State. This remedy, however, is violent and 


injurious to the State itself ; the people always fear it ; and 
the parliaments usually seek by humble entreaties to mod- 
erate the excessive terms proposed to them. But it some- 
times happens that they use this pretext to increase the 
authority of their office and to carry resistance far beyond 
the public good ; that is to say, they endeavour to take 
part in the ministry, when times and occasions give them 
the audacity to aim for it. 

The parliament of Paris believed that it could find, during 
the regency, opportunity to make itself felt; and those of 
this assembly who called themselves guardians of the king 
desired to make known their power by opposing that of 
the regent. During the late reign their authority had been 
humbled ; they sought impatiently for means to raise it, and 
at last their conduct revealed their intention. It was veiled, 
however, by zeal for the public good ; and in this first en- 
counter they declared that the sole rule of their sentiments 
was the desire to do right. As soon as the queen proposed 
to go before parliament, they said that she had not the right 
to do so. She laughed at this and said her right was founded 
on precedent, for the late queen, Marie de' Medici, had gone 
there. She resolved, however, to wait the return of the Due 
d'0rle*ans; for though she did not need his presence as a 
necessary thing, the prince was then living with her on such 
good terms that she thought, with reason, that she could not 
show him too much consideration ; and moreover, she was 
convinced that the presence of the king's uncle would always 
be advantageous to her son's affairs. 

The Due d'Orle'ans having arrived, and the day being 
fixed to go to parliament, the captain of the Guards, as was 
customary, visited all the prisons and took the keys of the 
Palais de Justice. The queen rose very early, and dressed 
with more care than usual She wore earrings of large dia- 


monds mingled with very large and pear-shaped pearls. On 
her bosom she had a cross of the same sort, of great value. 
This adornment, with her black veil, made her seem beautiful 
and of fine presence, and as such she pleased the whole 
assembly. Many gazed at her with admiration; and all 
acknowledged that in the gravity and sweetness of her eyes 
they recognized the grandeur of her birth and the beauty of 
her life and morals. 

The companies of the Guards and the Suisses were ordered 
to make a hedge, as was customary, along the way to the 
Palais de Justice ; and the queen with the king, whose 
beauty was then perfect, walked between them with all the 
grandeur that accompanies a king of France when he 
marches in ceremony ; on which occasion he is followed by 
his guards, his Suisses, his light-horse cavalry, his mus- 
keteers, and many gentlemen and nobles. Four presidents 
came to receive the king and queen at the Sainte-Chapelle, 
where their Majesties heard mass. The king, who was still 
in tunics, was carried to his lit de justice by his chief equerry. 
Mademoiselle de Beaumont, my sister, and I had gone before 
to see the arrival of the king and queen, and to be present 
at the function, in which we took much interest because the 
queen was the chief actress. 

When the king was placed, she stationed herself at his 
right hand. The Due d'Orle'ans (still called Monsieur) was 
below the queen, and the Prince de Conde* beside him. 
Then came the dukes and peers and the marshals of France, 
according to the rank of their duchies. On the other side 
were Cardinal Mazarin and several ecclesiastical peers. At 
the feet of the king was the Due de Joyeuse, his grand 
chamberlain, reclining on a hassock. Below was the chan- 
cellor of France, and beside him on the floor, were the judges 
of the courts. On the other side of the chancellor was a 


bench, on which were seated the Princesse de Cc-nde*, and 
the Princesse de Carignan, and farther down were the 
queen's maids-of -honour. The four secretaries of State were 
below on another bench, opposite to the judges. Madame 
de Senece', the king's governess, stood beside the king ; she 
seemed to me to be the nearest to the lit de justice. 1 After 
this order was fully established, the king saluted the whole 
assembly ; and after casting his eyes at the queen as if to 
ask her approval, he said aloud : " Messieurs, I have come 
here to talk to you of my affairs ; my chancellor will tell 
you my will." 

He pronounced those few words with a grace that gave 
joy to the whole assembly; and the joy was followed by 
public acclamation that lasted a long time. When the noise 
ceased, the chancellor, in an eloquent discourse, represented 
the necessities of the State, the splendid and celebrated 
victories we had won over the enemy, the desire the queen 
had for peace, and the need of continuing the war vigorously 
in order to force the Spaniards to make peace by the con- 
tinuation of our conquests; and for these results, he con- 
cluded, money was required, for in that lay the whole secret. 
The first president [Matthieu Mole", son of the great president 
under Henri IV.] praised the queen strongly, exaggerated 
the good fortune of France, the wise conduct of the minister, 
and the valour of the princes of the blood. In the same 
manner he represented with much vigour the necessities of 
the people, and made an harangue that was calculated to 
please both king and subjects. The advocate-general Talon 
[Omer Talon] spoke in a bolder manner ; he represented to 
the queen the oppressed people, ruined by past and present 
wars, asked mercy for them on his knees in a pathetic and 

1 This description tallies very closely with Saint-Simon's famous scene 
and diagram of Louis XV.'s first lit de justice under the regency. TR. 


touching manner, and said things much opposed to the 
supreme authority of favourites. The parliament thought 
that he had spoken well ; but I think that the minister was 
not well pleased, for I heard the speaker blamed by the 
Court adulators. 1 

The queen went to bed immediately on her return, to rest 
from this fatigue. After her dinner I found her in bed, and 
the cardinal with her. On opening the door of her room I 
made a noise; whereupon she asked one of her women, 
standing out of respect at a little distance, who it was. She 
heard, from myself, that it was I who entered, and she did 
me the honour to call me to her and wished me to give my 
opinion as to what had taken place that morning in parlia- 
ment. She asked me if the king had not pleased me infi- 
nitely when he spoke with such grace, and whether I had 
noticed his tender action in turning towards her ; and she 
specially ordered me to tell her what I thought of the 
harangues. As she saw by my answer that I was pretty 
well satisfied with the freedom of the advocate-general and 
spoke of it with respect, she replied in these noble words, 
worthy of a great queen : " You do right to praise him ; I 
strongly approve the firmness of his speech, and the warmth 
with which he defended the poor people. I esteem him, for 
we are always too much flattered ; and yet I think he said 
a little too much for a person as well-intentioned as I am, 
who desire with all my heart to relieve the people." 

The queen and her minister then talked of peace, and she 
showed an extreme desire for it ; but according to what the 
minister then told her, and I think he spoke the truth, it 
was necessary to continue the war to constrain the enemy to 

1 In Omer Talon's " Me'moires " he gives an account of this, and shows 
how his intervention only added to the bad state of the financial affairs. 
FR. ED. 

VOL. I. 9 


make peace. In all this conversation, which was long, I 
saw nothing in the queen but upright intentions for the good 
of the State and the relief of the people ; even the cardinal 
seemed to me touched by it. 

Other persons came in whose presence changed the topic. 
They spoke of Mademoiselle de Eohan, who, to satisfy the 
then reigning star, was about to marry Chabot, a gentleman 
of good and illustrious family, well-made, and a very worthy 
man, but, as I have said elsewhere, very inferior to the 
princes whom she might have married. She had great 
beauty, much intelligence, and was herself of illustrious 
birth; with it all she was very rich, as the heiress of the 
house of Eohan allied to that of our kings, and daughter of 
that great Due de Eohan so renowned in the history of the 
wars of the Huguenots. He had been their leader; and 
by his " Memoirs " we learn from himself the events of his 

Mademoiselle de Eohan married therefore from inclina- 
tion, after having passed her first youth with the reputation 
of so great a pride and a virtue so extraordinary that it was 
thought she could never be touched by any passion ; but the 
love that captured her heart forced her to be more gentle 
and less ambitious. Chabot was descended from the ad- 
miral of that name; but he was only a simple gentleman, 
without property or any establishment, whose sole advantage 
was that he had the good fortune to please a girl whom the 
Comte de Soissons thought to marry, and who could have 
married the Duke of Weimar, as rich in glory as the Caesars 
and Alexanders, whom she slighted with many others, among 
them the Due de Nemours, the eldest of the princes of the 
house of Savoie, who, as I have been told, was handsome 
and well-made. This was her last triumph, and the begin- 
ning of Chabot was that he profited by the failure of that 


marriage, seeing that the object of the desires of so many 
princes appeared to care for no one. 

She continued several years in this state; during which 
Chabot, under the name of relative and friend, often entered 
her room, and, by means of a sister of his who was with her, 
acquired her confidence. This familiarity gave him an 
opportunity of insinuating himself into her heart ; and when 
she perceived it she could no longer drive him out. I do 
not doubt that her reason and her pride gave her strange 
disquietudes, and often ill-treated the new-comer who 
wished to overthrow their empire. That soul so haughty 
had doubtless felt all that pride can make a person with so 
much ambition suffer. Honour, a powerful phantom which 
gives and takes away the reputation of honest men more in 
accordance with the clamour of the many than in obedience 
to true justice, often prompted her to renounce the friendship 
that so touched her. 

Nevertheless, I do not know if the sternness of her reflec- 
tions was not too great ; for it seems as if that which is in 
conformity with God's demands might always be excusable, 
and that her greatest fault in the matter was her failure of 
respect towards her mother. But that which calls itself the 
great world decides in another manner; and though every 
one knows how difficult it is to please that world, we all 
submit to its tyranny. "We run incessantly after its appro- 
bation, our lives are spent in that servitude, and never do 
we taste either sweetness or liberty because we have not the 
boldness to rise above vulgar opinions. At last, however, in 
spite of her combats, the pride of this illustrious heiress was 
lowered, and her reason driven off as importunate. 

The Duchesse de Eohan, her mother, was strongly opposed 
to the marriage, and the relatives of the house of Eohan 
were in despair. The friends of the heiress, who had re- 


vered her as a divinity, either from jealousy of Chabot, 
whom they regarded as their own equal, or from zeal to 
her interests, became her most cruel enemies. They banded 
together against her in order to persecute her ; which they 
did with an ardour in which there was far more outrage 
than love. This harshness which she encountered in the 
souls of her false friends, took away from her all the sweet- 
ness of her marriage, and made her know by experience that 
we are not to seek for true satisfaction in this life, and that 
whatever side the spirit of man turns to, it finds nothing but 

The fine autumn season (October, 1645), so suitable for a 
stay at Fontainebleau, induced the queen to go there, where 
(not to change our topic) we were to see a marriage far 
more dazzling than that of Mademoiselle de Eohan, because 
of the rank of the personages, whose birth was royal and sov- 
ereign, who had done nothing that was not strictly in order, 
but about whom nevertheless there was something extraor- 
dinary. The King of Poland, king by election and legiti- 
mate heir to the crown of Sweden, wishing to marry, had 
inquired, sub rosa, if Mademoiselle wished to be a queen. 
She received the proposal with great contempt ; the age of 
the king, his gout, and the barbarism of his country made 
her refuse him in a manner that showed she did not think 
him worthy of her. He then had some thoughts of Made- 
moiselle de Guise ; but that princess was in no favour at 
Court, because she had friends who were not friends of the 
cardinal; and although she had virtue, merit, and some 
remains of her great beauty, the marriage could not take 
place, for the queen had no inclination for it, and Mademoi- 
selle de Guise took no pains to bring it about. 

The old king then selected the Princesse Marie [de Gon- 
zague], who had been proposed to him with others. This 


princess, daughter of the Duke of Mantua, had been beau- 
tiful and agreeable; and was still so, although she had 
passed the first years of that youth which has the privilege 
of embellishing every woman. Monsieur, the king's brother, 
had been in love with her when he was presumptive heir 
to the crown. The queen his mother, Marie de' Medici, 
who had other designs for him, feared this passion, and sent 
the Princesse Marie to Vincennes, where she was for some 
time the innocent victim of a laudable affection. But the 
usual inconstancy of men and the downfall of Queen 
Marie de' Medici, in which the prince was involved, put 
an end to this little romance. When a hero gives up his 
love at the first unpropitious event it is to be supposed that 
the heroine will not be pleased and that the story is no 
longer charming. This love, which at first made a great 
noise and doubtless an impression on the heart of the Prin- 
cesse Marie, had short duration in that of Monsieur. But 
the remembrance of it was bitter to her who was forgotten, 
and I have heard some friends of the princess say that from 
the time of her imprisonment she hated the Due d'Orleans 
with irreconcilable hatred. 

After this they talked of marrying her to the King of 
Poland; but as such propositions do not always succeed 
he married instead of her a German princess, who did not 
live long, and left him with one daughter. The Duke of 
Mantua having died, the Princesse Marie remained in Paris, 
leading an easy and pleasant life among her friends. She 
thought only of amusing herself and enjoying the pleasure 
which the society of honourable people gives. In this agree- 
able condition, however, she was not exempt from vexations, 
for she had but little means and few husbands at her com- 
mand. Her affairs grew at last so bad that, the grand 
equerry Cinq-Mars having, during his favour, loved her, 


she listened favourably to him. His passion pleased her; 
and through this sentiment it was that he entered upon the 
great designs that ruined him, trusting to the hope that he 
might become connetable, and that with that rank and the 
splendour of his favour he would be worthy of marrying 
the daughter of a sovereign. His ruin, which she felt keenly, 
was in no way honourable to her; it made her friendship 
for him public and caused her much confusion. 

After this unfortunate affair, which discredited her and 
seemed to have lowered that noble pride which never wholly 
abandons persons of her birth, she had reason to believe 
she could no longer find happiness in life and that all 
things would go against her. But the Princesse de Conde* 
had a regard for her; she took up her interests warmly, 
and applied herself with care to bring about her marriage 
to the King of Poland. She spoke of it to the queen 
and to Cardinal Mazarin, and made her son the Due 
d'Enghien and all his cabal act in favour of it. She in- 
creased a desire in the queen's mind to choose her in pref- 
erence to Mademoiselle de Guise ; and the cardinal, on his 
part, believed that the Princesse Marie, who had no interests 
contrary to his, and who was poor and crushed by ill-fortune, 
would feel much gratitude. All these things together made 
him send Bregi as ambassador to Poland to negotiate the 
marriage. The latter succeeded so well that he made the 
king resolve to send ambassadors to ask for her. The Due 
d'Orle'ans, who had seen her troubles without pity, now saw 
her luck without envy ; if he had any feeling left for her, 
hatred had more share in it than love. 

The Polish ambassadors were received at Fontainebleau in 
the great salon of the queen, whose apartments are very 
beautiful. When they entered, the Princesse Marie was 
in the circle. She rose, so as not to be present at their 


harangue, and retired to a corner of the room to see them 
from a distance. She made use of me to screen herself 
from their sight, and by putting me before her prevented the 
men who were to be her subjects from perceiving her. After 
the ceremony, which only lasted the length of a compli- 
ment, these persons, who were all dressed in the French 
fashion and did not seem like foreigners, asked where she 
was. Some among them, who had already been hi France, 
knew her, and pointed her out to the ambassadors. We 
saw them turn towards her to salute her, and as I did not 
hide her much, in spite of her efforts, one of them, as he 
withdrew, made her a profound bow and all the others in 
his suite did likewise. At the audience which he had with 
her the next day he treated her as Majesty and with the 
same respect as if she had already been his queen. 

During the winter we beheld the second Polish embassy, 
which was fine and worthy of curiosity. It represented 
to our minds that ancient magnificence which passed from 
the Medes to the Persians, the luxury of which has been 
so well depicted by ancient authors. Though the Scythians 
have never had the reputation of being given to sensual 
habits, their descendants, who, at present, are neighbours 
to the Turks, seem to wish in a way to imitate the grandeur 
and majesty of the Seraglio. It appears that there still 
remain among them certain vestiges of their former bar- 
barism; nevertheless, our Frenchmen, instead of scoffing 
at them as they proposed to do, were constrained to praise 
them and acknowledge frankly, to the advantage of their 
nation, that their entry into Paris deserved our admiration. 
I saw them pass in the Place Koyale, from the house of 
Madame de Yellesavin, who gave us a great collation, where 
we found very good company to eat it. 

The Palatine of Posnania and the Bishop of Warmy were 


those whom the King of Poland selected to come and marry 
the Princesse Marie and bring her to him. They chose to 
appear dressed in the fashion of their country, the better to 
show their magnificence and the splendour of their stuffs. 
The Due d'Elbeuf was appointed by the queen, with a dozen 
other persons of quality, to receive them, and the carriages of 
the king, the Due d'0rle*ans, and the cardinal were sent for 
them. But, to tell the truth, all this seemed wretched in 
comparison with what these foreigners brought with them ; 
and yet they had traversed all Germany ! They made their 
entry into Paris by the Porte Saint-Antoine, with much grav- 
ity and the best order in the world. 

First we saw pass a company of foot-guards, dressed in red 
and yellow, with great jewelled buttons on their coats. They 
were commanded by two or three officers, richly clothed and 
very well mounted. Their coats were Turkish jackets of 
great beauty. Over them they wore a wide mantle with 
long sleeves which they allowed to hang negligently down 
the sides of their horses. Their jackets were enriched with 
buttons of diamonds, rubies, and pearls, and the mantles the 
same, which were lined like the jackets. 

After this company came another of the same kind com- 
manded by officers more richly dressed. Then- jackets and 
mantles were the same colour as that of their heiduques, 
green and gray. We then saw two other companies on 
horseback, who wore the same uniform as those on foot, one 
being red and yellow, the other green and gray, except that 
these were of richer material, and the caparison of the horses 
finer; also they wore more jewels. After them came our 
academistes, 1 who, to do honour to the foreign embassy and 
dishonour to their own land, had gone to meet it; they 

1 Meaning persons from the riding-schools, which were then called 
academies ; these were nearly all young seigneurs. FR. ED. 


seemed poor, and their horses also, though they were loaded 
with ribbons and feathers of all colours. On this occasion 
the French fashion of wearing no adornment but ribbons 
appeared mean and ridiculous. 

After these companies came many Polish seigneurs, each 
with their suite and their liveries, dressed in heavy brocades 
of silver and gold. Their stuffs were so rich, so beautiful, and 
the colours so vivid, that nothing in the world could be more 
pleasing. Diamonds glittered on their jackets; and yet, 
amid these riches, it must be owned that their magnificence 
had much that was barbaric. They wore no linen; they 
never slept in sheets like Europeans, but in skins of fur 
with which they wrapped themselves. Under their fur 
caps their heads were shaved, all but one little lock at 
the top of their heads which they allowed to hang down 
behind. As a general thing, they are so fat that they are 
sickening to look at ; and in all that concerns their persons 
they are dirty. Each Pole had a Frenchman at his side. 
These were men of the Court, all well-made, who had gone 
to meet them. 

This procession covered a long space of ground ; conse- 
quently its entry was very fine. There was one chief officer, 
who, as a mark of his dignity, wore three cock's-feathers in 
his cap, and the decoration of his horse was composed of the 
same kind of feathers. Some of their horses were painted 
red, and this fashion, though fantastic, was not thought 
unpleasing. The Palatine and the Bishop of Warmy came 
last ; behind them were the Due d'Elbeuf and his son the 
Prince d'Harcourt. The Palatine was handsome in face ; he 
had a fine complexion and black eyes, with a good expres- 
sion, and he wore his beard rather long and rather thick. 
The bishop also had a good expression, and was hi no way 
different from the others, not even in the shaved head. After 


them came their coaches, covered with massive silver where 
ours have only iron. The horses that drew them were hand- 
some and fat and did not seem tired with their journey. In 
short, all that we saw was worthy of being shown on parade. 
They crossed the whole city in this state ; the populace were 
in the streets, the people of quality at their windows. The 
king and queen were on a balcony which overlooked the open 
space, intending to see them; but they did not have that 
pleasure, because it was too late when the procession passed. 
They were taken to lodge at the VendSme mansion, which 
was empty on account of its master's exile; and there the 
king provided for them every day, magnificently. 

These foreigners had audience in the grand gallery of the 
Palais-Eoyal, which was shortened to one half of its length 
by a platform on which the queen stood. The princesses and 
duchesses who formed the circle, with the other ladies, were 
behind her. It was intended to celebrate the marriage with 
all the ceremonies required on such occasions, in order to 
show the grandeur of France to this barbaric nation ; but as 
precedence was not established, and each prince wished to go 
before the others, the plan was stopped by this difficulty. 
Great murmuring had arisen on all sides, and so many old 
disputes were revived that the queen thought best to smother 
the whole thing by having the ceremony in private. They 
began with Mademoiselle, in order to exclude all the rest, so 
that never was a wedding as solitary when done beneath the 
purple and a sceptre. 

The day being chosen, the Princesse Marie came very early 
in the morning from the hotel de Nevers to the room of 
Madame de Bregi, wife of the ambassador of France, who 
lodged in the Palais-EoyaL This room was near enough to 
the chapel for her to go down easily when all was ready. 
I went to see her as she was dressing for this celebrated 


day. I found her looking handsome, and whiter, I thought, 
than usual, though she was naturally very much so; but 
ladies on great occasions are never satisfied with what 
nature gives them. She had a fine figure, and was then of 
a reasonable plumpness. She was thirty-three years old. 
Her eyes were black and handsome, hair of the same colour, 
complexion and teeth beautiful, and the other features of 
her face neither handsome nor ugly; but altogether she 
had beauty, with the grand air in her person that befits 
a queen. She seemed to deserve all she had expected to 
have in marrying the Due d'0rle*ans, and all she was really 
to have in marrying a king. 

Her wedding dress was a body and petticoat of cloth of 
silver with silver embroideries. Above this she had in- 
tended to wear her Polish royal mantle, which is white, 
strewn with great flashes of gold ; but as the marriage was 
performed without ceremony the queen was of opinion that 
she ought not to wear it. She was left therefore with only 
the body and white petticoat, which latter, being in- 
tended to be worn underneath, was too short and had not 
the dignity required by the occasion. She was decked with 
the pearls and diamonds of the crown, which the queen had 
put together with her own hands. This adornment accom- 
panied a closed crown made of large diamonds and very 
large pearls of great price. When she was ready to put the 
crown on her head, she doubted if she ought to do so before 
the ceremony, and she ordered me to go to the queen and 
ask her opinion ; the queen did me the honour to tell me 
that as yet she had no right to wear it. When she was 
dressed she wished to show herself to the queen, who was 
in her own apartment, and she crossed the terrace which 
joins the two buildings, with two of her friends, my sister 
and myself. 


The Poles, who were in the courtyard below awaiting the 
hour for the mass, seeing her, sent up shouts of joy and 
gave her many benedictions. She found the queen in her 
room, and, after thanking her for the kindness she had 
shown her, she addressed the cardinal, who had worthily 
served her, and told him she came to show him whether 
the crown he had placed upon her head became her. The 
queen, who was wearing her great pearls and her mourning 
mantle, then led the princess to the chapel through the 
great gallery. There was no one present but the king, the 
queen, the queen that .was to be, the little Monsieur and 
the Due d'Orle'ans. The princess knelt upon the foot-cloth 
laid in the centre of the chapel, the king on her right side, 
the queen on her left. Monsieur the king's brother, and 
the Due d'Oiie'ans, the king's uncle, were behind on their 
knees upon the foot-cloth ; consequently the latter was for 
this day her inferior. This moment, when she saw herself 
raised above that faithless prince, above even the queen 
whose subject she had been before her father became sover- 
eign, was no doubt most agreeable and glorious to her. 

The Bishop of Warmy celebrated the mass and the mar- 
riage of his king and queen, whom the Palatine married in 
the name of his master. After mass was said they placed 
the crown upon her head. It was Madame de Senec^ and 
Champagne, the hair-dresser, who performed that office for 
her. Besides the Poles, there was no one in the chapel but 
the royal personages and those of the blood royal whom I 
have just named, except the Mare"chale d'Estre"es, Madame 
de Montausier, and Madame de Choisy. The last three 
were the intimate friends of the Queen of Poland, and she 
had entreated the queen to allow them to be present. 
Madame de Bregi, my sister, and I were also present. 

As good is usually mingled with evil, all the grandeur of 


the Queen of Poland lost much of its splendour when she 
arrived at her capital, and her joy was evaporated by the 
presence of the king she had come so far to seek. In 
Warsaw she was received with little acclamation, for the 
king was old, oppressed with gout and fat, and so ill and 
gloomy that he would allow no ceremonies on her arrival. 
He did not think her as handsome as her portraits, and 
showed no esteem for her person. I heard from the Mare"- 
chale de G-ue'briant, who accompanied her by order of 
the queen, that this old husband received her in church 
seated on a chair from which he did not rise, or even pre- 
tend to do so. 

When she came beside him she knelt and kissed his hand. 
He received her salute without the slightest sign of gentle- 
ness or benignity. He looked at her gravely and let her 
kiss his hand without saying a word. Then he turned 
towards Bregi, the ambassador, who stood beside him, and 
said aloud : " Is that the great beauty about which you told 
me wonders ? " The Mare"chale de Gue"briant told me that 
the princess, who saw nothing in him but rudeness and per^ 
ceived the disgust he showed for her, was amazed ; and this 
bad reception, added to the fatigue of the journey, made her 
so ugly that the king had reason to be disgusted. The red 
of vexation and shame is not a good rouge for ladies, and 
grief takes the fire from their eyes. 

The king, ill and gouty, rose from his chair after this 
cruelty, and went to the altar, where, without ceasing his 
rudeness, he married the queen again; after which they 
sat down to assist in singing psalms to the praise of God, 
and in thanks to Him for their marriage. The queen was 
then taken to the king's palace, where their Polish Majesties 
were served at supper with a meat which seemed horrible to 
the eyes of the queen and the Mare*chale de Gue"briant, but 


worse a thousand times to their taste. In short, all that they 
saw frightened them, and at night the queen, terrified at 
the position in which she found herself, said in a low voice 
to the marechale that she had better return to France. The 
rest of the day was passed in the same way. The king did 
not speak to her, and far from showing her any tenderness, 
she was obliged, after waiting for him, to go into another 
apartment and pass the night alone. 

Madame de Gue"briant made complaints, and told certain 
of the nation whom she knew among those who had accom- 
panied the queen to Poland, that France would be very 
ill-pleased if contempt were shown to what she had sent 
them. She said she could not return satisfied if she did 
not see the king less indifferent to the queen. Her com- 
plaints did lessen to some extent the contempt of the king ; 
they forced him to treat the princess rather better, and live 
with her as his wife. When Madame de Gue*briant left her, 
she was growing more contented, and consoling herself with 
the magnificent gifts that were sent to her from all parts; 
for in that country when the kings marry, their subjects are 
accustomed to make the new queen presents of great value. 
The hope of growing rich comforted this queen. She 
became rich, and the treasure she amassed served her soon 
after hi the great trials God sent her, which have made 
her illustrious through the proofs she then gave to all 
Europe of her firmness and courage. 1 

This winter was spent by the Court in perfect tranquillity. 
A few little jealousies between Mademoiselle and the Prin- 
cesse de Conde* occupied the queen's cabinet, but without 
disturbing it, and if the queen had only followed her own 

1 On the death of the king, Ladislas III., she married his brother and 
successor, Jean Casimir. Her sister, Anne de Gonzague, was the cele- 
brated Princess Palatine. 


sentiments, and confined the exercise of her will exclusively 
to herself, we could have boasted that our Court was the 
most agreeable in the world, and so have enjoyed the 
pleasantest life ever tasted by those who have the honour of 
approaching great personages. 


1646 1647- 

THE queen was personally amiable; she treated her ser- 
vants as friends, though she never took enough pains to 
do good to those she esteemed and to whom she felt kindly. 
Persons of right feeling, though deprived of benefits from 
her through the avarice of her minister, had at least this 
consolation, that she distinguished them by her esteem, and, 
though she did not do them many favours, it was not 
because she thought they were unworthy of them. We were 
obliged, therefore, to content ourselves with the queen's 
kind treatment ; and this pleasure, which contained in itself 
enough glory to satisfy a faithful heart, was accompanied 
by great peacefulness. Self-interests did not light the 
consuming fires of jealousy among us, and our hopes were 
always so dead, our ambition so crushed, that we could 
say we had seen a Court only in picture, because we saw 
it without venturing to form desires about the great in- 
terests that usually charm men. 

The queen, who, during the lifetime of the late king and 
after God had given her children, had talked only of the desire 
she felt to have them instructed in all knowledge, was much 
embarrassed when it became a question of how it should be 
done. There is no one into whose mind it does not come 
that princes ought to know more than one thing, and we 
must agree that Latin is not the most necessary knowledge. 
Politics is the true grammar which they ought to study ; and 
history, good in all languages, will show them examples, and 


give them views by which to govern great kingdoms, to 
control by the same laws peoples of different natures, to 
maintain them in peace with their neighbours, and make 
them feared by their enemies. The evil is that this is 
not a science that can be taught to children; it is only 
through the experience of some years that these things 
can be learned. 

For this reason the queen, convinced that Cardinal Mazarin 
was the ablest man in Europe, resolved at last to yield up 
to him the care of educating the king her son. She left to 
him even the choice of the king's governor, and it was the 
cardinal who appointed the Marquis de Villeroy to a post so 
important. He was the wisest man at Court ; he had com- 
manded the armies ; but his great qualification was knowing 
better than any one else the interior affairs of the kingdom, 
and having both capacity and ideas for matters of State. 
The tutor appointed under him was the Abbe* de Beaumont, 
a doctor of theology, brought up under Cardinal Kichelieu. 
He had integrity, but never having devoted himself to 
belles-lettres was little capable of embellishing the mind of 
a young prince and of occupying it with the great and inter- 
esting things which ought not to be unknown to sovereigns. 
The Marquis de Villeroy and the abbe* both replied to those 
who made them suggestions, that their conduct was ruled 
by the superior, to whom was given superintendence of the 
royal education, this being a title newly invented to make 
all employments and all offices dependent on the cardinal. 
I ought to render one testimony to the truth, namely : that 
the Marquis de Villeroy (soon after Due and Mardchal 
de France) told me at the time, speaking of the king, 
whose natural intelligence he admired, that he was not 
master of the way hi which he was being brought up ; 
and that if he were listened to, he would not leave so good 

VOL. I. 10 


a soil without cultivating it at the time it was most impor- 
tant to do so. For that reason he wished his friends to do 
him justice and not blame him for doing his duty ilL 

It is true that he took pains to present to the king those 
who excelled in any science or art ; and he never lost an 
occasion to relate to him things that had happened in his 
time, and good sayings that he had heard from persons of the 
old Court; about which he made reflections that might be 
useful to him. The tutor, on the other hand, jealous of his 
office, took no pleasure in making the king talk with men 
of intellect, for which he might perhaps have acquired a taste 
together with a curiosity to learn a thousand things of which 
he was ignorant; for the king had a natural desire to be 
told things he did not know, and would himself talk only 
of things he knew. 

He was made to translate the Commentaries of Csesar ; he 
learned to dance, to draw, and to ride on horseback ; and he 
was very skilful in all exercises of the body, as much so 
as a prince who is not to make a profession of it ought to 
be. But the queen, who had reserved the supervision she 
would naturally have in the education of her son over and 
above that she had yielded to her minister, took great care 
to maintain in the soul of the young king those sentiments 
of virtue, honour, and piety, which she had instilled into 
him from infancy; caring more to prevent a young mind 
like his from losing the innocence of its morals than to 
see him better instructed in those things that are apt to 
take from youth a certain timidity which precedes good 
judgment and is lost but too soon. 

At the beginning of the summer [May, 1646], the queen 
made a journey to Compie'gne, whence she went to Amiens 
to accompany the Due d'Orle'ans on his way to command 
the army in Flanders, to which, soon after, the Due d'En- 


ghien was added. I stayed in Paris, because, not having 
certain advantages in servants, journeys were fatiguing to 
rne and very costly. Monsieur delayed a few days later 
than the queen in order to prepare himself for war, and I 
remember that many of my friends came to bid me adieu 
who were killed in that murderous campaign. Valourfso} 
vaunted by all nations and practised by ours, noble as it is,* 
has its drawbacks; and the bravest who rush with such joy! 
to its opportunities, have even more if they return with theiri 
legs and arms. It desolates families and robs the Court of 
its best, and, to tell the whole truth, though nothing in th6 
world is finer than valour, nothing is worse than war. 

The queen was away on her journey six weeks. Nothing 
extraordinary happened, and her return brought us joy, for 
not only was her intimacy with us gentle, agreeable, and 
glorious, but we were so accustomed to the honour of seeing 
her that Paris, during her absence, seemed to us another 
city, and our life another life. In these first years of the 
regency the Court was so tranquil and our life so delightful 
that it was impossible not to love it. Mademoiselle de 
Beaumont, however, noticed an alteration in the queen's face 
after her return which threatened her with a little storm. 
Though the queen on arriving in Paris told the Princesse 
de Conde", who was with her, that she was glad to see us 
again, it is certain that this young lady in particular had 
had the misfortune to displease the minister. Her conduct 
was rather imprudent. She was a daring girl, whose spirit 
was high, rough, and ill-regulated. She blamed the govern- 
ment with so little caution that she often found spies where 
she thought she was safe ; and though these qualities were 
mingled with noble sentiments, as the vessel was without a 
pilot it was easily wrecked on that sea, although at the 
time it was perfectly calm. 


During the queen's absence she had gone to make a trip 
with M. and Mme. de Chavigny, who continued to stand ill 
at Court. This intimacy displeased the cardinal, though it 
had nothing in itself but what was praiseworthy; but this 
displeasure induced the cardinal to request the queen to dis- 
miss her. It is not difficult to make great personages dislike 
those who talk much and who may therefore be suspected 
of rashness. On this pretext her dismissal was asked 

f and granted. Though Mademoiselle de Beaumont and I 

\ were of different temperaments, and her manner of acting 
was the opposite of mine, chance had made us friends; I 
loved in her without approving her proceedings her 
frankness, her spirit, which was natural, and her sentiments, 
which seemed to me to have a certain stoical virtue. But I 
made her continual harangues as to her conduct which I did 
not like, and as to the vehemence of her decisions. She 
always wanted to reform the State, from that false glory 
that people give themselves by despising others, and not at 
all from any true source of honour and integrity. She was 
the only one who knew of the blame I gave her, and as we 
were often together Cardinal Mazarin for this reason desired 

I that I ' also should be sent away from Court. 
""fie judged of my thoughts by the friendship I had for her 

; and by the approval I appeared to give to her words. The 
queen, who had known me from my childhood, and knew 
that my intentions were upright, could not doubt my fidelity. 
She was good enough to answer for me to her minister, and 
to assure him of the propriety of my conduct without inquir- 
ing of me ; so true is it that on all occasions it is best to do 
right and not boast of it. This was the cause of my good 
fortune that the queen never had any ill-opinion of me ; and 
as Cardinal Mazarin was not strongly determined on my 
ruin, he let himself be persuaded by her ; and thus I saved 


myself from a punishment I did not deserve, and a peril I 
did not perceive until it had passed.,! 

Commands were sent to Mademoiselle de Beaumont not 
to see the queen again. I was astonished when, on the eve- 
ning of the same day, I heard this news. It was thought 
that I should be included and made to feel on this occasion 
the consequences of the word " cabal." My friends were 
anxious about me, and when I entered the queen's room, 
though I myself was far from having any fear, I noticed a 
change on their faces ; indifferent persons looked at me from 
a distance ; and all, whispering to their neighbours, thought 
me lost. One of my friends had the boldness to approach 
me and pay me a compliment. I asked him, laughing, the 
reason of such serious discourse, and from him I heard of 
the dismissal of Mademoiselle de Beaumont. From this, I 
comprehended easily all the rest. I was sorry for the mis- 
fortune of my friend, but I did not feel, I think, any trouble 
in my soul that could shame me. As I was sure of my own 
innocence, I went abruptly into- the cabinet where the queen 
was ; and in that instant, despite the charms of her presence 
and the honour I had in being admitted to it, it crossed my 
mind that the benefits we possess at a Court, and even the 
favour I had had there, are not true benefits worthy of 
esteem ;/ and that perhaps my dismissal, casting me against 
my will into solitude, might be to me a veritable happiness ; 
for it is not one to live in a place where it is almost impos- 
sible to keep one's self from weaknesses which give as much 
pain as they do vexation to those who are intelligent enough 
to recognize them i 

I was not long in this effort to strengthen myself by 
reason against my dismissal. The queen, who was afraid 
that the affair of Mile, de Beaumont would cause me 
uneasiness, took care to remove it. As soon as she saw me 


she assumed a kindly face and spoke to me amiably ; and 
this care, at this moment, showed me the generosity of her 
soul, which was quite independent of the sentiments of 
others. She was undressing to enter her bath, for it was 
very hot weather. As soon as she was in it, I knelt beside 
the bathtub to speak with her, and I asked her the reason of 
my friend's dismissal She did me the honour to reply 
as follows: that she had sent her away because she had 
blamed her conduct in a displeasing manner ; that she was 
one of those persons who cry out against everything, more 
from bad taste than from any good reason they have to 
do so ; who disapprove of all they see, and who discern the 
actions they pretend to judge solely through their self- 
conceit. She added that she wondered how I, who had not 
the same sentiments or the same heart, could have friend- 
ship with her and be social up to that time with a person so 
far from my own nature. 

It was time to say no more, and I merely tried to soften 
the queen's resentment. I excused my friend on the hasti- 
ness of her mind and her impetuous temperament ; and, try- 
ing to justify her good intentions, I assured the queen that 
the foundation was good, and that in all essential things I 
believed she would never fail in fidelity to her service or in 
zeal for her interests. At that moment the queen drew her 
hand from the water and laid it all wet upon mine, which 
she pressed, saying, in tones to be remembered : " You are 
too good, Madame de Motteville: I assure you she would 
not do as much for you, and I know what I say." Those 
words impressed themselves deeply on my soul, and although 
they did not make me wholly suspect my friend, because it 
would not be just to doubt for so slight a cause, they at least 
made me more easily enlightened in the future, so that in 
course of time I became altogether undeceived. The hard 


experience I have had of the fictitious friendship of human 
beings has forced me to believe that there is nothing so rare 
in this world as probity, or a good heart capable of gratitude 
to those who act uprightly. ) 

Cardinal Mazarin also spoke to me on the subjects of 
complaint he thought he had against me; he told me that 
my friends did me harm, meaning this exiled one and Com- 
mander de Jars. He let me know that Mile, de Beaumont 
made me offensive in her way, and that the queen had been 
told that when she wanted to point some specially sharp satire 
against her she always said, " Madame de Motteville and I 
think, or say, or judge thus and so," and to strengthen herself 
she brought me into the game about whatever she alleged. 

I easily understood the cardinal's mind when he spoke 
to me in this manner. I knew very well that no regard 
for me led him to make me that confidence ; and that his 
only object was to part and disunite us, by letting me know 
I must follow that course if I wished to please him. But, 
as for truth, I think he did not deceive me, and that 
Mile, de Beaumont, who, in spite of her free-thinking mind, 
was shrewd and politic, wished to have confederates. I 
had often, also, surprised her in ways of acting to insure 
that I was not more agreeable to the queen than herself. 
I contented myself, however, by replying to the minister 
as I had to the queen. I excused her of whom he com- 
plained as best I could ; and, separating my conduct from 
that of others, I tried to persuade him in my favour. I 
did not acquire his good graces in this way; because he 
never esteemed those who made it a principle to act 
honestly and without treachery; but as he had softness 
and benignity and had seen the queen show an inclina- 
tion to protect me, I found it easy to cure his mind of 
its dislike. My words had enough force to induce him 


to leave me in peace, but not enough to produce any good 
effects on my fortunes. I own that I did not apply myself 
to succeed in that. Moreover, I always had friends whom 
he hated, perhaps justly, whose proceedings I was never 
willing to blame ; and through this fidelity which we owe 
to one another, I have preferred the pleasure of serving 
them to that of promoting my own affairs. 

The queen had entirely settled down into following the 
advice of this minister ; he knew that we were not neces- 
sary to her, and he no longer feared that any one could 
injure him with her. For this reason he continued with 
us on the same terms. As for me, he let me live on with- 
out doing me either good or evil; as for those who dis- 
pleased him, he found means to dismiss them when they 
had given enough cause by their conduct to obtain the 
consent of the queen. But the truth must be told that 
he used his power with laudable moderation ; he loved the 
State, and served the king with a fidelity that deserved 
J3ie_ confidence the queen placed in him. 

Directly after the death of the Due de Bre*z [killed at 
the naval battle of Orbitello] the Prince de Condd attacked 
the Duchesse d'Aiguillon, who claimed that the Duchesse 
d'Enghien could not inherit from her brother the Due de 
Bre"ze\ because she had renounced her inheritance on marry- 
ing. At the same time the prince asked of the queen the 
vacant admiralty, the government of Brouage, and all its 
offices. The admiralty was not granted to him, because 
the control of the sea would have made a first prince of 
the blood too powerful in France; and the government of 
Brouage remained in the hands of one of the Due de Bre"z#s 
favourites, named the Comte de Daugnon, who had quietly 
taken possession of it against the will of the queen and 


On this refusal, the Prince de Conde* left the Court, pre- 
tending to grumble, and went to his own estates. The Due 
d'Enghien, who was with the army commanded by Monsieur, 
wrote to the queen and loudly asserted his claims. He 
declared them legitimate, and that he hoped to obtain this 
justice from her. I saw the letters that he wrote her. 
From their style, it was easy to judge that he did not 
mean the blood of France to be useless to him, and that 
he had a pride of heart which might one day be trouble- 
some to the king. It was said of him that his courage and 
his genius led him more to combats than to politics. On 
this occasion, however, he observed all the rules of policy, 
and, quitting the audacious manner in which he was wont 
to wrangle with Monsieur about everything, he began by 
humbling himself wholly to him. As they were in the 
same army he affected to show him the greatest assiduity, 
and even sought with care to win over the Abb^ de la 
Eiviere. Their intimacy advanced so much that Monsieur 
wrote to the queen and to the cardinal in favour of the 
Due d'Enghien, which caused great uneasiness to the min- 
ister. The enmity of those two important personages pleased 
him much more than their union. 

The Prince de Conde* was a great politician. He was 
timid and afraid of quarrelling with the Court. He loved 
the State, and it was said of him now that his counsels were 
always for order and justice. He gave them with much 
intelligence, and it was often remarked that he would have 
made a great king. The baseness he had shown under his 
brother Louis XIII. had been to his shame, but he was now 
held to be wise and prudent. As he was beginning to grow 
old and knew the evils a prince of the blood must endure 
if he revolts against the king, he readily allowed himself to 
be persuaded that he must not grumble too long. A few 


days later he sent to Le Tellier, secretary of State, to lodge 
his complaint. Some negotiation took place, the conclusion 
of which was that the decision on his claims should be put 
off till the end of the campaign, and that meantime they 
would all be good friends. Thus the prince's wrath passed 
easily away. He returned to Court, was treated well, and 
his grievances were apparently calmed after the manner 
of great personages, who nearly always hate each other, and 
make pretence to the contrary as a matter of parade. 

The Princesse de Conde", who was then with the queen, 
although she was ambitious and would have liked to see 
all the crowns of Europe on the head of her son the Due 
d'Enghien, never ceased to protest to the queen that she 
had no interests separate from hers, and that her friendship 
for her was stronger than her desires for the grandeur of 
her son ; so that the queen was apparently half convinced, 
and continued to live with her in her usual manner, If, 
without being a dupe, she chose to believe what the princess 
told her, I make bold to be certain that though the latter 
did not feel the friendship she testified to the queen, she 
was at least touched by her caresses and the pleasures of 
favour. From the Princesse de Condi's nature, I feel sure 
she would have been in despair to have her family quarrel 
with the Court, as much from fear of losing its delights, as 
for the sake of her greater interests. 

The queen spent nearly the whole summer at Fontaine- 
bleau, and the one spot in the world where the heat is 
greatest served as her retreat for the hottest season. The 
amusements of the ladies were entirely confined within 
the limits of the river Seine. Every day they spent many 
hours in the water, or in the forest which they had to pass 
through in order to reach it; the dust of the one being 
washed off by the other. 


The king, who was still a child, bathed also, and his 
governor, the Marshal de Villeroy, who never left him, 
did the same. The queen, and all those who had the 
honour to accompany her, usually wore long chemises of 
gray linen which trailed on the ground. The king's gov- 
ernor wore the same, and modesty was in no wise wounded. 
All the men under sixty were at the army ; none remained 
with the queen but her officers and a small number of 
courtiers attached to the service or the fortunes of the 
minister ; otherwise the Court was deserted. I found, never- 
theless, that we were a good company, for, to my thinking, 
a Court is never more agreeable than when the crowd is 
not there. 

In Flanders, our army, though large and fine, did not do 
great exploits. They besieged Courtray with thirty thousand 
men, and the Due de Lorraine with equal numbers camped 
in front of us. The two armies were a long time looking 
at each other without doing themselves any harm. We 
offered battle to the enemy, but they did not accept it. 
Only a few little fights took place ; but at last they ventured 
to attack our lines, and we took the place [June 30] in 
their presence and to their shame. 

After this conquest the army went straight to attack 
Mardick, which the Due d'Orle'ans had taken the previous 
year and which, this year, had been surprised and retaken 
by the enemy in three hours. Clanleu, whom the Due 
d'Orle'ans had placed there in command, being absent when 
the enemy attacked, was blamed for this loss. Though he 
was known to be valiant, there was guilt enough in being 
imprudent or careless. He was doubly so because this 
siege, by which Monsieur undertook to repair his fault, cost 
much blood to France, and much treasure. The duke was 
blamed for undertaking it ; he had no naval force, and the 


enemy, having a free exit towards Dunkerque, could enter 
as they pleased, so that this paltry little place was able 
to defend itself. He excused himself on the score of the 
Dutch, who still made a show of being on our side. They 
had promised him to be before the place at a certain time 
with a number of vessels capable of preventing all com- 
munication by the enemy. As they meant in the end to 
desert us, they failed to keep this promise in time, and the 
duke failed in his project. This was the reason why those 
who were in Mardick defended themselves so easily against 
our attacks and made the affair so disadvantageous for us. 

The enemy made a sortie on the side of the Due 
d'Enghien; and that prince, rushing to the support of his 
men, was wounded in the face [August 15] by a pot which 
was flung from the town, and came near killing him or 
putting out his sight. The Comte de Flex, son-in-law of 
the Marquise de Senec6, lady-of-honour to the queen, was 
killed, a good man who, with many fine qualities, deserved 
much. The young Comte de Eoche-Guyon had the same 
misfortune ; he was son of the Due de Liancourt, and sole 
heir of his father's great wealth, and that of his uncle the 
Mare*chal de Schomberg. He had married the heiress of 
the house of Lannoi, who was left pregnant of a daughter 
to whom she gave birth soon after her husband's death. 
This young seigneur was extremely regretted, as much 
out of considerations for his father and mother, who were 
respected by all good people, as for the charm of his person ; 
every one pitied his fate. 

The Due de Nemours was wounded in the thigh. He 
was an amiable prince and worthy of all esteem. His 
wound caused great anxiety to his friends, and many ladies, 
so it was secretly told, made vows for his recovery. The 
Chevalier de Fiesque, who, his friends declared, had intel- 


ligence and virtue, was killed ; he was mourned by the 
daughter of a great house, who honoured him with a tender 
and virtuous love. I know none of the particulars, but, 
according to general opinion, it was founded on piety and 
virtue, and consequently very remarkable. Soon after his 
death, this virtuous young woman, wishing to despise utterly 
the grandeurs of the world, left them all, as unworthy to 
occupy a place in her soul; she gave herself to God, and 
shut herself up in the great convent of the Carmelites, 
where she now serves as an example through the life she 
leads. The Marquis de The*mines, sole heir of his house, 
had the same unfortunate fate as the others. He was son 
of the Mare*chale d'Estrdes by her first husband. He showed 
much promise and was a great loss to his family. 

The day the courier who brought the sad news arrived, all 
the rooms at Fontainebleau resounded with cries. These 
illustrious dead and wounded were personages of the Court 
and among the most distinguished; their relatives and 
friends wept for them before the eyes of the queen. She 
went to see Madame de Senece" to console her for the loss of 
her son-in-law, who left a young widow of extreme virtue, 
and little children who lost much in losing him. The queen 
endeavoured to soften the bitter sorrow of others by the com- 
passion she felt for it, and by the feelings she showed to 
them. The Princesse de Condd was for several days in great 
anxiety ; her fears led her to believe that they were conceal- 
ing from her the danger of her son's wound. To the con- 
dolences of those whom she did not think in her interests, 
she answered, being sour and proud, by telling them they 
were sad because he was not wounded badly enough. 

The queen might have consoled herself, for the Due 
d'Enghien was dreaded in the matter of the government of 
Brouage, and for his claim to the admiralship, which she did 


not choose to give him. One evening, lying on a little bed 
in her cabinet, and talking of him to me with the esteem 
which he deserved that she should feel for him, after 
expressing a wish for his recovery, she said a thing which 
came from the confidence she always had in God : " I believe 
that God, to whose providence I confide myself wholly, inas- 
much as He has saved him, knows that he will not do me 
harm ; and if he should do me any, it will be according to 
His orders, and for my good and my salvation." Her 
prophecy has been accomplished; the prince, after doing 
great services to the king and to her, did her harm. She was 
compelled to do the same to him ; but I do not doubt that 
she profited by the good use I saw her make of all the 
troubles that afterwards come upon her from this source. 

The Due d'0rle"ans, at the queen's request, returned to 
Fontainebleau, September 1, 1646, where she awaited him to 
end their summer together in that agreeable place with the 
amusements to be found there. She wished to leave the 
Due d'Enghien to his amusements of cannon and sword, 
the accompaniments of a warrior who finds his pleasure in 
battle and the conquest of cities. The king and queen, 
wishing to welcome Monsieur, intended to go out and meet 
him, but as their Majesties did not encounter him soon, their 
plan ended in only a drive. The cardinal continued on until 
he met him, and returned with him a few hours later. This 
arrival filled the Court with the Dues de Guise, d'Elbosuf, de 
Candale, and a fine troop of men of quality, who were not 
sorry to rest from the fatigues of the siege of Mardick in the 
loveliest spot in the world. 

As soon as the Due d'Enghien found himself in a position 
to act alone, he besieged Furnes, September 9, a little town 
near Dunkerque, which he took in a few days. This plan, 
the precursor of a greater, pleased the minister. He had 


counselled attacking that place before they went to Mardick, 
but the Due d'Orldans would not consent, considering the 
enterprise too difficult. The friendship which had seemingly 
existed between the two princes during the campaign was 
not strong enough to keep their hearts from being filled by 
jealousy and self-love. The Due d'Orldans did not see with- 
out vexation the project the Due d'Enghien had of taking 
Dunkerque, which he had kept secret from him; and the 
Due d'Enghien did not find himself sole master of that great 
design without feeling the utmost joy. I have heard Com- 
minges, who was with him for some time, say that he was 
not as much wounded when he found himself alone as he 
was when his superior was with him ; and Comminges sus- 
pected him of having feigned a greater wound than he had, 
in order to let Monsieur go away in the belief that he was 
not in a state to undertake anything. 

The queen received, September 13, 1646, an ambassador 
extraordinary from the Queen of Sweden, who apparently 
came only to bring about the alliance of the two crowns. 
The person chosen by the Swedish queen for that purpose 
was the Comte de La Gardie. He was son of the Conne'table 
of Sweden; his grandfather was French, of, it was said, 
rather ordinary birth. He was well-made, with a haughty 
manner and the air of a favourite. He spoke of his queen in 
terms both passionate and respectful, so that he was readily 
suspected of greater tenderness than that which he owed her 
as a subject. He was betrothed to a cousin-german of the 
queen, whom she herself made him marry. Some said that 
if she had followed her inclinations she would have taken 
him herself, but she conquered them by her reason and the 
grandeur of her soul, which could not endure that lowering. 
Others said that she was born free-thinking, and that being 
able to put herself above custom, she either did not love him, 


or no longer loved him, when she gave him to another. 
However that may be, the man seemed worthy of his luck, 
but more fitted to please than to govern. 

From the manner hi which he spoke of the queen his mis- 
tress, it seemed that she needed no minister, for although 
very young she managed all her affairs herself. Besides the 
hours she gave to study, she employed many, he told us, in 
the care of her kingdom. Judging by the description he 
gave of her, she had neither the face, nor the beauty, nor 
the inclinations of a lady. Instead of making men die of 
love, she made them die of shame and vexation, and was the 
cause of the great philosopher Descartes losing his life in 
that way because she did not approve of his philosophy. 1 
She wrote to the queen, to Monsieur the king's uncle, to the 
Due d'Enghien, and to Cardinal Mazarin, letters which I saw 
and which were much admired for the gallantry of the 
thoughts, the beauty of the style, and the facility with 
which she expressed herself in our language, which was 
familiar to her, as were many others. At that time all the 
heroic virtues were attributed to her ; she was placed on a 
par with the most illustrious women of antiquity ; every pen 
was employed hi praising her, and it was said that the 
highest sciences were to her what the needle and distaff are 
to the rest of our sex. Fame is a great talker ; it often likes 
to pass the bounds of truth ; but truth has strength ; it does 
not long leave a credulous world abandoned to deception. 
Some time later it was known that the virtues of this Gothic 
queen were only middling ; she had no respect for Christian- 
ity, and if she practised its precepts it was more from fancy 

1 Christina, Queen of Sweden, daughter of Gustavus Adolphus ; born 
1626 ; ascended the throne 1632 ; abdicated in favour of her cousin, 
Charles Gustavus, 1664 ; and died in Rome 1689. It was the severe 
climate of Sweden that killed Descartes, and not her ill reception of his 
philosophy. TR. 



than feeling. But she was learned to the level of the most 
learned man ; and up to this time she had a great reputation 
at her Court, among her peoples, and throughout all Europe. 

To welcome her ambassador, balls, comedies, great repasts, 
and all ordinary amusements were given to him. He adorned 
the drive by the canal of Fontainebleau with a coach of 
gold and silver embroidery which was made expressly for 
his queen. It was drawn by six horses, richly harnessed, 
followed by a dozen pages in the Queen of Sweden's livery, 
which was yellow and black with silver lace. This image 
of another Court, uniting with the reality and beauty of 
ours, made the drive by the canal most agreeable. 

Shortly after our return from Fontainebleau, the news 
arrived of the taking of Dunkerque, which gave great glory 
to the Due d'Enghien and much joy to the minister, who 
felt that it contributed to his own glory. He believed, with 
much reason, that the prosperity of the State was the 
foundation of his own good fortune, rather than the magni- 
fying of the crown. The Mare*chal de La Meilleraye took 
at the same time Porto-Longone in Italy; and this victory, 
though little fruitful for France, was an agreeable success 
to the cardinal, who liked to triumph and make himself 
feared in his own country. 

About this time died the illustrious Bassompierre, much 
lauded in the last century for his gallantry. He had gone 
to Pons to see d'fimery, the neighbour of Bouthillier, father 
of Chavigny, to whom the beautiful mansion of Pons be- 
longed. There he fell ill of a continued fever, of which 
he was cured in a few days ; but on his way back to Court, 
his servants found him dead in his bed in the morning, at 
an inn where he passed the night, although he had shown 
no sign of more illness. 

This seigneur, who was valued by Henri IV., favoured 

VOL. I 11 


by Marie de' Medici, and so lauded and admired in the 
days of his youth, was no longer regretted in ours. He 
still preserved a few remains of his past beauty ; he was 
civil, obliging, and liberal ; but the young people could not 
endure him ; and I have seen some of them unjust enough 
to turn him into ridicule because he liked to invite them 
to good cheer when he had not enough dinner for himself 
alone. They said he was no longer in the fashion, that he 
told too many little stories, and talked too much of himself 
and his times. Other defects they put upon him, some of 
which I agree to. They accused him, as if it were a great 
crime, of liking to please and of being grandiloquent, and 
also that, coming from a Court where civility and respect were 
the rule towards ladies, he continued to live by the same 
principles in one where men thought it shamed them to pay 
any civility, and where unbridled ambition and cupidity are 
the noblest virtues of the great seigneurs and the most 
honest men of our century. 

The cold severity during the reign of the late king, and 
the temperament of Cardinal Mazarin were among the causes 
of the present rudeness; for the latter, besides his avarice, 
despised honest women, belles-lettres, and all that con- 
tributes to the politeness of men. The sterility of favours, 
the desire to obtain them, and the impossibility of doing 
so by deserving them, have rendered courtiers incapable of 
seeking distinction in noble ways ; but as their ambition 
becomes stronger and more ill-regulated, it triumphs over 
then- hearts ; and the result is that they cannot endure a 
man who has preserved the old customs; in which they 
certainly are, to my mind, wrong. The relics of old Mare*- 
chal de Bassompierre were worth more than the youth of 
some of the most polished men of our day. 

The Due d'Enghien, soon after, arrived from the army 


victorious, and demanded, with apparent humility and real 
boldness, the reward of the admiralship. The queen had 
already taken that dignity in her own name to keep it for 
the king, and Cardinal Mazarin therefore possessed it, with- 
out appearing to do so, for several years. The prince made 
many propositions which were not received, such as that 
of giving him an army for Franch'e-Comte', which he would 
afterwards have erected into a sovereignty. This proposal 
was evaded, for it recalled the evils which the Dues de Bour- 
gogne, princes of the blood and sovereigns, had formerly 
done to the kingdom. Other proposals were then made to 
him, which he rejected. The Due d'Ole'ans, with his good 
intentions and kindliness, showed great interest in main- 
taining the peace of the Court ; so that during these secret 
negotiations matters did not cease to appear in a good state. 
The Due d'Enghien was not strong enough, even if his in- 
tentions were worse than they were, to form a party for 
himself with the hope of good success. Many persons 
were disposed to quarrel, but the queen was still too well 
supported, and the victories strengthened her power. The 
Due d'Orldans was content, and the cardinal not yet enough 
hated ; she had therefore nothing to fear. 

While they were thus striving to satisfy the Due d'En- 
ghien, who wanted much, and to whom they wished to give 
little, the Prince de Conde*, his father, fell ill and died in 
three days. His offices and his governments, which were 
very considerable, served to pay to his son the debts he 
thought were due to him. He was sorry, no doubt, that 
he had not pressed for a decision sooner, having boldness 
enough to take both advantages; but not having done so, 
he had not enough boldness to insist on the two inheri- 
tances, which would have made him master of France. 
The offers that had been made to him about that of the 


Due de Bre'ze', his brother-in-law, were of no small impor- 
tance. He could then have had Stenay, Jametz, and Cler- 
mont; but he refused them, to claim more. In the end 
he obtained them because the minister had not the strength 
to refuse him when, in the quarrels that afterwards arose, 
his power lessened and that of the princes increased. 

The Prince de Conde', first prince of the blood and full of 
merit, died about midnight on the day after Christmas, 1646 ; 
he ended his life as a Christian, and his last hours must 
have effaced before God the passions of his youth. Though 
his forefathers had been Huguenots, he was always the 
inveterate enemy of that religion, and he ever remained 
firmly in the true one. Henri IV. had caused him to be 
declared presumptive heir to the crown; he was then so 
poor that his property was reckoned at ten thousand francs 
a year. At his death it was said that he left a million 
a year, besides his office as grand-master of the king's house- 
hold, and his various governments. His defects equalled 
his virtues ; both were considerable. Besides the bad repu- 
tation he acquired in his youth, he was avaricious, and 
also unlucky in war. That is the mildest term one can 
use about a prince who was said not to be valiant. Those 
who saw him when young said that he was then handsome ; 
but in his last years he was dirty and slovenly, and had 
few remains of his good looks. His eyes, which were very 
large, were red ; his beard was neglected, and his hair, as 
a usual thing, very greasy. He always wore it tucked 
behind his ears; in short, he was in no wise agreeable to 
look upon. 

But, beyond what I have said of him, it should be added 
that he always wanted the laws of the State observed, and 
that in the councils he invariably protected justice. He 
was the scourge of partisans, and had shown on many occa- 


sions that he had no greater passion than that for equity 
and honest reasoning. This same spirit led to order in 
his household; he took care himself to send his servants 
to mass on Sundays and fete-days, and at Easter he was 
accustomed, in order to oblige his people to do their duty 
on that sacred day, to give them each a quarter of a crown. 
I have heard it said, but I do not know if it is true, that 
he sometimes went to the public markets to inquire himself 
into the price of provisions, and to know the details of 
everything, that he might look after the police, and famil- 
iarize himself with the populace; not, perhaps, without 
design to please them and attach them to his person. 

He was preparing to oppose Cardinal Mazarin, whose 
conduct he did not approve. It is to be believed that he 
expected that revolts would arise during a long regency, 
which would give him an opportunity to attack him. The 
queen could not endure that in the councils he should offer 
the slightest opposition to the matters there treated; and 
therefore he was nearly always an obstacle to the minister's 
plans ; which often proceeded from the rectitude and zeal 
that prompted him for the good of the State. When dying, 
he asked pardon of the minister, and assured him he had 
never had any design against him, other than that of doing 
his own duty and satisfying his conscience. He gave his 
blessing to his children on condition that they lived as 
good Catholics. He advised them never to fail in what they 
owed to the king, and assured them that the greatest mis- 
fortune that could happen to a prince of the blood was 
to take sides against his sovereign, because that was losing 
a noble station to become the slave of those who served 
him. He behaved to the Princesse de Conde* as if he had 
loved her all his life ; but the truth is, he never considered 
her until he found she could serve his interests at Court, 


where she was better liked than he. She was not in de- 
spair at his death; and the illustrious Madame de Ram- 
bouillet was much lauded for saying on this occasion that 
Madame la princesse had never had but two happy days 
with her husband: the day he married her, on account of 
the high rank he gave her, and the day he died, through 
the liberty he returned to her and the great property he 
left her. Besides being well-treated in his will, she had, 
as heiress of the great house of the Montmorencys, large 
claims upon the estate of her late husband. 

On that same Christmas day the Duchesse d'Orle'ans gave 
birth to a daughter, a cause of great grief to her husband, 
who passionately desired a son ; and as he was kind and 
much-loved, Frenchmen desired it for him ; for naturally we 
like the race of our kings and desire to see it preserved. 
What afflicted Monsieur was joy to the Due d'Enghien, who 
thus found himself first prince of the blood, not only by 
the death of the prince his father, but because this daughter 
did not prevent him from assuming that rank at once, and 
enjoying its prerogatives for the rest of his life. The 
advantages are great, and can never be lost when once they 
are possessed. 

The new Prince de Conde" was more fortunate than Mon- 
sieur, for he already had a son, who, child as he was, had 
borne the holy-water from the king to his grandfather. 
The body of the late prince lay in state for three days, and 
as he had been very miserly in life, the Court people made 
amusing jests on the pain his soul must be feeling in the 
other world at such great and useless expense about his 
body. The wit of man is always ready to laugh at things 
serious. Such examples ought nevertheless to make him 
enter more deeply into a sense of the nothingness of the 
vanities and grandeurs of this world. 


The queen went to see the Princesse de Conde", more to 
rejoice than condole with her; and she also visited the 
whole family, except Madame de Longueville who had been 
for some time absent, having gone to Munster to join the 
Due de Longueville, whom the queen had sent there at the 
beginning of her regency to work for peace. 



THE chief affairs of the Court, those of which it seemed to 
think the most, were amusement and pleasure. I have 
already said that the queen loved the theatre, and went there 
in secret during the year of her great mourning ; but she now 
went publicly. Comedies were played every two days, some- 
times Italian, sometimes French ; and quite often there were 
assemblies. The preceding year the rector of Saint-Germain, 
a severe and pious man, wrote to the queen that she ought not, 
in conscience, to permit such amusements. He condemned 
the theatre ; particularly Italian comedies, as freer and less 
modest. This letter had troubled the soul of the queen, who 
did not wish to permit anything against what she owed to 
God. Being still uneasy on the subject, she consulted many 
persons. Several bishops told her that plays which repre- 
sented, as a usual thing, serious histories could not do harm ; 
they assured her that the courtiers needed such occupations 
to keep them from worse things ; they said that the piety of 
kings ought to be different from that of private persons, for 
being public personages they should authorize public amuse- 
ments when they were of the class of harmless things. 
Accordingly the theatre was approved, and the gayety of 
Italian comedy saved itself under the wing of serious 

The Court assembled in the evenings in the little salle des 
comedies at the Palais-EoyaL The queen sat in a box to 
hear more conveniently, and went there by a little staircase 
which was not very far from her chamber. She took the 


king, the cardinal, and sometimes persons to whom she 
wished to pay attentions, either for their rank or as a favour. 
We received such favours with pleasure, because those who 
have the honour to approach kings familiarly can never pre- 
vent themselves from regarding these trifles as very impor- 
tant things ; all the more because they are counted as such 
in public estimation. 

When the rector of Saint-Germain saw that the theatre 
was fully established, he woke up in good earnest and spoke 
against it like a man who wished to do what he thought his 
duty. He came to see the queen and maintained to her that 
this amusement was a mortal sin and ought not to be per- 
mitted. He brought his opinion signed by seven doctors of 
the Sorbonne who held the same sentiments. This second 
pastoral reprimand caused fresh uneasiness to the queen, who 
resolved to send the Abbd de Beaumont, the king's tutor, to 
consult in the Sorbonne itself a contrary opinion. It was 
declared by ten or twelve doctors that, provided nothing was 
said on the stage that could bring scandal or was contrary to 
virtuous morals, the theatre was in itself harmless and could 
be attended without scruple ; and this was founded on the fact 
that the usage of the Church had greatly lessened the apos- 
tolic severity which the early Christians observed in the first 
centuries. By this means the queen's conscience was set at 
rest ; but sorrow to us who have degenerated from the virtue 
of our fathers, sorrow to us for thus becoming infirm in zeal 
and faithfulness ! The courtiers cried out against the rector 
and treated him openly with ridicule. They tried to persuade 
the queen that Pere Vincent, a worthy man and one of great 
piety, had taken part in this affair in order to work the ruin 
of her minister, by condemning things that he had author- 
ized. But on several occasions she replied to this that she 
did not believe a word of it. 


Though. I only mention great affairs in passing, as a 
woman who cannot know them thoroughly and has often 
neglected to notice them at all, it has happened, nevertheless, 
that many have been discussed in the cabinet and that I 
have applied myself to listen to the actors in them when 
they spoke. Those that were of consequence, coming thus to 
my knowledge, I shall write down as they may happen to 
occur to me, without being careful to know them all, or any 
of them to their full extent, because I have no intention of 
writing a regular history. But I have taken care to tell only 
the truth ; which has always come to me solely from those 
who had the chief part in such affairs. The peace which 
the Dutch made with Spain, which I shall mention here, is a 
proof of what I say ; it is a fragment which I let fall as I go 
my way; it will find its place with others of the same 
nature, and as it will not be treated with more order or con- 
nection than those, it will not have more worth or value. 

This people, rebellious against its king, which had caused 
such trouble to Philip the Second, which had sated the cruelty 
of the Duke of Alba under his yoke, given employment to 
the valour of the Duke of Parma, and put to such proof 
the virtue of Marguerite and that of the Infanta Clara- 
Eugenia this republic, in short, so celebrated for its 
power, for the boldness of its enterprise, for its establishment 
and the glorious actions done by the Prince of Orange in 
governing it, had sustained its rebellion by the assistance of 
France ; but this assistance it now resolved to abandon, and 
to put itself completely in possession of legitimate liberty. 

Liberty had already been offered to the people of Holland, 
but the ministers of France, Cardinals Eichelieu and Mazarin, 
had always hindered it. The depressed condition of their 
real master, whose affairs were in a bad state, now gave them 
the means of making peace with him and preserving their 


usurped States, their conquests, and their supremacy. Ac- 
cordingly they made a treaty with him (which was not con- 
cluded until some time later) and became peaceably lords of 
their country, of which they remained sovereigns, with the 
shame of being as bad Christians as they were bad subjects. 
To keep some terms with France they delayed signing this 
treaty, saying that they wished to bring about a general 
peace before they separated entirely from us. Orders were 
given to the Comte de Servien, who was at Munster, to go to 
Holland and endeavour to break off this particular treaty; 
but he did not succeed ; these people, following the example 
of all others, thought only of their own interests and the 
strengthening of their own grandeur. 

D'Estrades, who was envoy to the Prince of Orange from 
the king when this arrangement was concluded, told me that 
the cupidity of the Princess of Orange was the cause of it ; 
and that the Spaniards had won her over during the last 
days of her husband's life. He declared that that prince, 
who resembled his forefathers in valour and capacity, would 
never have consented to the peace had he been hi a state to 
follow his feelings of glory and ambition. He was convinced 
that the end of the war would be the end of the power of his 
house, and that when he no longer made himself feared by 
arms his people would despise him. But his maladies, by 
diminishing the strength of his body, diminished also his 
strength of mind, so that he did not oppose the negotiation 
as he would have done had he been in better health. If the 
greed of a woman began the work, the avarice of the minis- 
ter, in spite of his desire to prevent the peace, concluded it. 
D'Estrades, relating to me all the particulars, said that the 
princess only allied herself with Spain out of vexation that 
Cardinal Mazarin failed to send her some diamond earrings 
which he had led her to expect. 


But not to leave so long the Court of our regent let us 
return to the princes, who were the only cause of uneasiness 
that the queen now had [January, 1647]. The Prince de 
Condd, having become rich and powerful, was regarded by 
the whole Court as the one whose friendship or hatred was 
to make or mar the fortunes of men. 

That victorious air which the battles of Eocroy and Fri- 
bourg and the taking of Furnes, Mardick, and Dunkerque had 
given him, made him so considered by his masters that most 
persons sought his protection rather than that of the Due 
d'0rle*ans. That is why his court was so very large ; those 
who, through their great establishments, were in a position 
to do harm or good having offered him their services and 
attached themselves to his interests ; whenever he came to 
visit the queen he filled her room with the most distinguished 
personages of the kingdom. His favourites, who were the 
greater part of the young seigneurs who had followed him in 
the army and now shared his grandeur as they did his glory, 
were called the petits-maitres, because they belonged to one 
who seemed to be the master of them all ; and this new title 
effaced that of the importants. 

At the end of the Shrovetide [March 2, 1647] Cardinal 
Mazarin gave a great fete to the Court, which was very fine 
and much praised by adulators, who are to be met with at 
all times. It consisted of a comedy, with stage scenery and 
music in the Italian fashion, which seemed to us most beau- 
tiful, although we had seen others that were wonderful and 
regal. He had brought the musicians from Eome with great 
trouble, also the machinist, who was a man of much reputa- 
tion for such scenery. The dresses were magnificent, and the 
whole preparation of the same kind. Worldlings were de- 
lighted, the devout murmured ; and those ill-regulated minds 
who blame everything that takes place did not fail, as usual, 


to poison pleasure, because such persons cannot breathe its 
atmosphere without vexation and wrath. 

This comedy could not be ready till the last days of the 
carnival , which caused the cardinal and the Due d'Orle'ans 
to urge the queen to let it be played in Lent ; but she, who 
kept her will in all that related to her conscience, refused 
consent. She even showed some annoyance that the comedy, 
which was played on a Saturday for the first time, was 
arranged to begin late, because she wished to make her 
devotions on the Sunday; and the evening of the days on 
which she took the communion she was accustomed to retire 
early in order to rise earlier than usual the next morning. 
She did not wish to lose the pleasure altogether, for the sake 
of him who gave it; but in order not to fail in what she 
thought her duty, she left the play in the middle to pray to 
God and sup and go to bed at the suitable time, so that 
nothing might upset the regularity of her life. Cardinal 
Mazarin showed some annoyance at this ; and though the 
matter was a mere trifle, with only enough serious foundation 
to oblige the queen to do as she did, she was nevertheless 
considered to have acted against the feelings of her minister. 
And as he showed he was vexed, this little bitterness was a 
sweet morsel to a large number of persons. Idle tongues 
and ears were busy with it for days ; and even the gravest 
persons felt moments of joy which were to them delectable. 

The Mare*chal de Gramont, eloquent, witty, Gascon, and 
bold hi flattery, set this comedy among the wonders of the 
world ; the Due de Mortemart, great amateur of music and 
great courtier, seemed enchanted with the mere name of the 
lowest actors ; and the pair, in order to please the minister, 
made such exaggerations when they talked of it that they 
became wearisome at last to persons who were moderate in 


The next evening the celebrated comedy was played again, 
and the queen saw the whole of it. On Monday there was a 
ball, given on the stage of a hall arranged with scenery, 
which could be moved in a moment ; it was really the finest 
thing ever seen. The hall was gilded and lined with great 
frames hi which were pictures painted in perspective ; a most 
agreeable sight to those who occupied the amphitheatre. 
This hall was also furnished with seats and hassocks placed 
hi niches around it, and did not look as if the hand of man 
had anything to do with it. At one end was a throne raised 
about four or five steps, on which were cushions, chairs with 
arms, and a dais overhead of silver and gold cloth, with 
fringes worthy of such furniture. Four great crystal chan- 
deliers lighted this hall, which seemed a veritable fairyland, 
representing in our day the era of Urganda and Armida, 

The king, to show civility to the Prince of Wales, would 
not take his own seat, but gave it to Mademoiselle, who 
was decked that evening by the queen's own hands with 
the crown jewels, pearls and diamonds, fastened with little 
cherry-coloured and black and white ribbons. This adorn- 
ment was beautiful and pleasing, particularly the bouquet 
she wore upon her head. It seemed as if those great 
diamonds and pearls were strewn among the flowers, and 
that all the beauty and wealth of nature were gathered 
there expressly to deck her. From this bouquet issued three 
feathers, of the three colours of the ribbons, which drooped to 
her throat, and she made us see on this occasion that a hand- 
some person becomes handsomer for being decorated. The 
king wore a suit of black satin embroidered with silver and 
gold, through which the black appeared only enough to set 
off the embroidery. Cherry-coloured plumes and ribbons 
completed his adornment, but the beautiful features of his 
face, the sweetness of his eyes joined to their gravity, the 


whiteness and brilliancy of his complexion, together with his 
hair, which was then very blond, adorned him more than his 
clothes. He danced perfectly ; and though he was then only 
eight years old, it could be said of him that he was the one 
of the whole company who had the most distinguished air 
and assuredly the most beauty. 

The Prince of Wales received much praise and pleased 
everybody. But the one whose suit obtained the most 
approbation was the Vidame d' Amiens, son-in-law of the 
Mare'chal de Villeroy. He wore an embroidery of gold and 
pearls, the workmanship of which was so delicate that there 
was nothing of the common order in it ; it seemed to disdain 
jewels as if they were something too vulgar. 

The Duchesse de Montbazon came decked with pearls, and 
cherry-coloured feathers on her head, and though she was 
then more than forty years of age, she was still in dazzling 
beauty, showing that a fine autumn is always beautiful. 
Mademoiselle de Guise was present, no longer young, though 
much more so than the Duchesse de Montbazon. Her 
beauty, her kind manner and her modesty, with pearls and a 
black gown, made her admired by all who saw her. All the 
other persons of an age to adorn a ball did their best to 
please the spectators. The queen's maids-of-honour, Pons, 
Querchy, and Saint-Me'grin, tried to make a few natural con- 
quests by the care they took to embellish themselves in all 
sorts of ways. Happy they if, among so many lovers, they 
had been able to catch husbands according to their ambition, 
and the unruliness of their desires. 

The comedy was again represented on the following day, 
the Mardi gras. It ended very late and we had had no sup- 
per. The cardinal offered us his, and we went to eat it with 
him, Madame de Bregi, Mademoiselle de Beaumont, my 
sister, and I (for Mile, de Beaumont was now restored to the 


good graces of the queen). This was the only meal he ever 
gave us in his life, and it was not much. He treated us with 
great indifference and coldness. He despised women and 
did not think them worthy of esteem, unless, by intrigues or 
malice, they found means to obtain his confidence. We left 
him very ill-pleased at not being better received, particularly 
Madame de Bregi, who being a handsome woman made a 
profession of being so, and even had the audacity to pretend 
that the great minister had a certain feeling of tenderness 
for her. For this reason she felt his coldness more than the 
rest of us, who were quite resolved to put up with it and 
well accustomed to his disdainful manners. 

The Prince de Conde', seeing the month of March advanc- 
ing, began to think of his journey to Catalonia. Before he 
started [March 20, 1647] he had a short emotion which 
troubled the peace of his heart. He had let himself be over- 
come by the beauty of Mademoiselle de Toussy, and this 
weakness slipped into his heart at a time when, in spite of 
his youth, he was beginning to profess loudly a contempt for 
the mad passion of love, and a resolve to give himself 
entirely to that of glory. He played the braggart against 
gallantry, often declaring that he renounced it, and even did 
so at this ball, though it was a place where his presence 
appeared to advantage. He was not handsome ; his face was 
ugly in shape ; his eyes were blue and keen, and there was 
much pride in his glance. His nose was aquiline, his mouth 
extremely disagreeable, because it was large and his teeth 
projected too much ; but in his whole countenance there was 
something grand and haughty, with a certain resemblance to 
an eagle. He was not very tall, but his figure in itself was 
perfect. He danced well and had an agreeable air; his 
bearing was lofty and his head fine, its arrangement with 
curls and powder being required to make it appear so. But 


even at this time he neglected his person much ; and in the 
deep mourning which he wore for his late father he was not 
pleasing, for, his face being long and thin, this negligence was 
the more disadvantageous to him. 

The Prince of Orange died about this time. His death, 
for the reasons I have given, was a loss to France, and 
his merits having made him respected throughout Europe, 
he was much regretted. The unfortunate King of Eng- 
land, who had honoured him with his alliance, was now 
rinding himself on the verge of his fatal destiny. He was 
betrayed by the Scotch, to whom he had gone in search of 
fidelity and troops to avenge him on the parliamentarians ; 
but that barbarous people delivered him to his enemies. I 
heard it said that they asked him if he was not content to 
go back to England, and he answered that it was more 
just he should go to those who had bought him than stay 
with those who had sold him. He went, only to be kept a 
prisoner in the Isle of Wight, where he stayed till his death. 
Many proposals were made to him by the parliament and 
his subjects. But, whether he found them contrary to his 
conscience, or lacked ability to choose those that were suit- 
able (as was said by persons capable of judging), he did not 
accept any, and was reserved by God's decree for the most 
cruel and amazing end a king can come to. 

In France we no longer have, thank God, religious wars ; 
there are now only contests frequently arising among our 
learned men on questions of theology. There was one on 
Grace which seemed to have been ended by a decision of 
Pope Urbain VIII., against which none of the doctors de- 
claimed; but in their hearts both sides were still of the 
same sentiments made public by their writings. Pere Des 
Mares, of the congregation of the priests of the Oratory, who 
preached the Lent of this year with much zeal and wholly 

TOL. I. 12 


according to the Gospel as to morals, was admired by people 
of the highest quality, the finest minds, and even those who 
were most retired from the world. But, as to doctrine, he 
was thought to be of the opinion of Jansenius, Bishop of 
Ypres in Flanders, who had written a book in the spirit of 
Saint Augustin on this great mystery. And, as it was diffi- 
cult for him, as for other preachers, to treat this matter so 
delicately that no word could be found to cavil at, nothing was 
talked of in Paris but " the Jansenists " and " the Molinists." 
This question, as to which there was no one who did not 
take an interest for the satisfaction of his conscience, not 
only divided the schools, but social life [les ruelles], and the 
city as well as the Court. Those who were called Molinists 
(from Molina, a learned Spanish priest) had on their side the 
censure of five propositions in the book of Jansenius ; and 
those called Jansenists maintained that the five condemned 
propositions were not in that book. This defence, their 
wholly exemplary lives, the austerity of which they made 
profession, drew to them the esteem of a great number of 
persons of solid piety ; and they would have been esteemed 
by every one if they had avoided the blame that may justly 
be cast upon them of having taught women (in French so 
beautiful that it made the sex quit their novels) those great 
difficulties on which it is forbidden to write, together with 
questions of conscience about which none but confessors 
should be instructed. It has cost us so much to have learned 
the knowledge of good and evil that we ought to agree that 
it is better to be ignorant of such matters than to learn 
them ; especially for us women who are accused of being the 
cause of all evil. We see such great men, with all their in- 
tellect and all their learning, ruin themselves in heresies 
which they think they draw from Holy Scripture ! I cannot 
withhold myself from saying that no Christian should decide 


for himself that which is environed by so much obscurity ; 
nor should he enter into the details of mysteries which the 
councils themselves cannot elucidate, and which they com- 
mand us to believe surrounded by all their darkness. God 
himself having chosen, no doubt, to hide from us this knowl- 
edge and enclose it in its own immensity, we must hope that 
in heaven souls, separated from their earthly natures, will 
learn its wonders and see the causes for which it has pleased 
Him to leave them ignorant of the deep abysses of Grace, 
and the manner in which it operates in the soul for our 

The great Saint Augustin, whose ideas are revered in the 
Church, and whose writings seem to have produced the 
opinions of those who are called Jansenists, has never clearly 
explained these wonderful secrets. The saint himself could 
not comprehend them ; he speaks of their Author with 
admiration, and confesses humbly that the judgments of 
God are inscrutable, and His ways past discovering. The 
most learned know nothing when it is a question of under- 
standing them; and I believe that this great teacher of 
grace, teacher of all Christians, and of the Jansenists in 
particular, would have willingly said, when in this world, 
with the Italian poet, 

" Ampi volumi immeiisi 
De le tue glorie eterne 
Son le sfere superne ; 
E con dorata, e lucida favella 
Di te parla ogni stella. 
lo lo so, Signer, ma non penetro i sensi, 
Ch' a la lingua del mondo avvezzo essendo 
La favella del ciel non ben comprendo." * 

1 The celestial spheres are ample and vast volumes of Thy eternal 
glories ; and each star speaks of Thee in golden words. I know it, Lord ; 
but their meaning I cannot penetrate, because, being used to the language 
of earth, I cannot comprehend the language of heaven. 


Whenever I hear men speaking of God in relation to 
the hidden mysteries, I am delighted not to be obliged to 
know more than my Pater, my Credo, and the Command- 
ments of God. As to the matter of which I have been 
speaking, I know that it suffices me to believe we have 
nothing but that which we have received; that I can do 
no good without the grace of God ; and that he has given 
me my free will. 

The queen at once took the side of the Jesuits [Molinists], 
who had the advantage of governing the king's conscience. 
She thought herself obliged to oppose opinions whi'ch were 
considered novelties and might disturb the Church. On 
the other hand, one had reason to be surprised in seeing 
those who appeared to maintain the orthodox opinions allow- 
ing the publication, under their name, of maxims quite con- 
trary to the Gospel touching morality, without sufficiently 
rebuking the authors. The queen, zealous for good, was 
often led to say with pain, not intending to lay it on any 
special person, that she knew no perfect virtue, nor any 
piety without much weakness. 

Early in the year the Due d'Orle'ans started for Bourbon 
to take the waters, and Madame followed him. They went 
there for health in order to give a prince to France, a grand- 
son of Henri IV., which Monsieur passionately desired. 
The princess never made long journeys, whether from 
crotchets or real illness ; she seldom went out, declaring that 
the least agitation made her faint. I have sometimes heard 
Monsieur laughing about her, and telling the queen how she 
took the communion in her bed rather than go to the chapel 
which was close by, without her having, apparently, any real 
illness. When she came to see the queen, once in two years 
or so, she had herself carried in a chair, but with such fuss 
and affectation that her arrival at the Palais-Eoyal was 


celebrated as if it were a little miracle. Often she would 
get only three steps from the Luxembourg, when she had 
to be taken back, being attacked by some of the many ills 
she said she felt, but which never appeared. She ate bread 
which she carried in a provision pocket ; and Russia leather 
boots were her mortal enemies. She was sister to the Due 
de Lorraine, and Monsieur had married her during his exile 
from France, without the consent of the late king. When 
Nancy was taken she had to fly, disguised as a page, in 
the bottom of a cart; and was forced to pay with great 
distresses for the honour she had gained in marrying 

That prince, on his side, being then heir presumptive to 
the crown, though obliged to leave her in Flanders when he 
returned to France, remained inviolably faithful to her. As 
he showed no firmness for others who had attached them- 
selves to him, King Louis XIII., his brother, urged him, on 
his return to France, to consent to the rupture of the mar- 
riage ; but this he would never do, and he brought his wife 
to France as soon as the death of the king and that of 
Cardinal Richelieu enabled him to do so. 

I have heard it said that on arriving at that beautiful 
palace of the Luxembourg in Paris some one asked if she 
did not feel great joy at finding herself in that superb place ; 
to which she coldly answered that after the joy of again 
seeing Monsieur, all the rest seemed nothing to her. She 
had a good mind, and reasoned well on all subjects about 
which she chose to talk. She seemed, by what she said, to 
have heart and ambition. She loved Monsieur ardently; 
and hated in the same way any one who could injure her 
with him. She was handsome in the features of her face, 
which were beautiful and well-formed; but she was not 
agreeable ; her whole person lacked I know not what that 


was pleasing ; but as for actual ugliness, she had it only in 
her teeth, which were already decayed. It was said of this 
princess that she was beautiful without being so, and had 
intellect but seemed to have none because she made no use 
of it. She was fat and thin both; her face was full and 
her bosom handsome, so her women said, but her hands and 
arms were very thin. It must also be said that she had not 
a fine figure, but neither was she deformed. In short, all 
contrasts were collected in her in a surprising manner ; and 
it was impossible to speak of her except with an ambiguity 
to be used about no one else. 

It was also true that Monsieur loved her and did not love 
her. He lived with her and treated her well ; he never 
deliberately annoyed her ; and when he thought her dis- 
satisfied or grieved he did all he could to cure her little 
thoughts. He never left her, and when he was at home he 
spent nearly all his time in her room, showing sometimes 
that he esteemed her virtue and her intelligence. But he had 
a favourite [the Abbe* de la Eiviere] whom she did not like ; 
he had raised him to extreme grandeur and had confidence 
in him, and she was never able to do him an injury. Mon- 
sieur often laughed at her delicacies and whims with the 
ladies who served her, and even with the queen, to whom 
he used to say that she was visionary, that her piety was 
ridiculous, that she never talked except to her confessor, 
whom she consulted about the merest trifles. Neither did 
he spare her favourites, who were among the silliest crea- 
tures in Paris. He said, speaking of them, that persons of 
merit, lacking discernment, ought to be ashamed to be on 
good terms with them ; that her court was decried because 
those who were obliged to see her, on account of her rank, 
found there none but persons unworthy of her favour and 
approbation. So it may be said he loved her, but did not 


love her often ; and the respect he had for her was varied in 
the same degree. 

Those who knew her intimately told me she was naturally 
insensible to friendship ; and that, if she loved Monsieur, 
that feeling had no other operation in her than to incite her 
to scold him continually and cause him much vexation ; so 
that their union was as inexplicable as all the rest. As the 
princess was both healthy and ill at the same time, and as 
she belonged to those virtuous women who like to follow 
their husbands, her physician obliged her much by ordering 
her to the baths of Bourbon because Monsieur was to take 
them. She ceased to complain in order to make the journey, 
because she always wanted to be with him ; and not only 
did she make it, but she did not go in a chair, as she first 
intended. She never left the coach in which Monsieur was, 
and seemed to bear the fatigues of the journey more easily 
than the most robust women. 

The Duchesse d'0rle*ans might justly have a passion for 
Monsieur. He was agreeable in person. His complexion 
and the features of his face were handsome, the expression 
of his countenance pleasing; his eyes were blue, his hair 
black. He looked like the son of a king, but badly trained. 
In spite of his natural restlessness and his grimaces, it was 
easy to see both birth and grandeur in his person. He was 
kind and easy of access. He had intelligence, spoke well, 
and jested pleasantly. He had read much and knew history 
thoroughly, with much other studious knowledge. Nothing 
was wanting in this prince for society, except that he was 
rather vainglorious, with that coarse pride which made him 
hold his rank too stiffly, though it did not prevent his treat- 
ing kindly those who approached him. I have seen women 
of quality standing in the room where he was, to show the 
respect they owed him, without his having the civility to 


ask them to sit down ; and men complained that in the 
roughest weather he never told them to put on their hats, 
which the king, his brother, always did. 

He was accused of being timid and lazy. But I have 
heard it said that he sometimes went into very dangerous 
places, as far in the advance as the common soldiers. But 
there is one stain on his life which dishonours him. It was 
when, in his youth, he formed a party in France for the 
interests of the queen his mother, and the Due de Mont- 
morency, fighting for him, was made prisoner before his 
very eyes; he could have saved him, but he did not, and 
was the cause that that great seigneur, the most amiable, 
as I was told, of men, was beheaded. His favourite, the 
Abbe" de la Kiviere, whose interest it was to preserve him, 
kept him as much as he could from going into danger ; and 
Mare'chal de G-assion, one day when the prince had done 
personally well and had bravely risked musket shots, said, 
after praising him, that he had been lively that time because 
his suckfish [remora] was not there. It was for this reason 
that the Court desired this year that the Due d'Orldans should 
not command the army; and the doctors who sent him to 
the Baths gave no little pleasure to the ministers; for not 
only did his expenses as commander increase immensely 
the royal budget, but the finest plans were rendered useless 
by cares for his preservation. The maxim of conquerors is 
to risk; but it was impossible to propose schemes of that 
nature to a general of such consequence, who, after the 
king, the queen, and the little real Monsieur, held the first 
place in the kingdom, and whose life was therefore precious 
to France, which naturally loves the children of her kings. 

The Comte d'Harcourt, that unfortunate general, returning 
from Catalonia, arrived in Holy-Week [April 20, 1647]. The 
queen, by advice of the cardinal, received him coldly. It 


was the minister's habit to do harsh things through her, and 
to reserve favours, benefits, and pardons for his own bestowal; 
for the queen was convinced that the more friends the car- 
dinal made, the more the peace of her regency was secured. 
With this idea, she told Comte d'Harcourt that she thought 
him wrong for having undertaken the siege of Lerida against 
the orders of the king. He replied like an able man, though 
he was not suspected of being one, that he entreated her 
very humbly to believe him incapable of failing in respect 
or fidelity to whatever concerned his duty and the obedience 
that he owed to her wishes ; and (in order not to importune 
her with his reasons for so acting) he begged her to let him 
inform the cardinal, who, he hoped, would have sufficient 
equity to justify him to her. His scheme succeeded ; for 
as the minister only wanted to mortify him, he took him 
back into his good graces after a great explanation, and, as 
the count himself had foreseen, he received good treatment 
from the queen when he next presented himself before her. 

The festivals passed as usual. The queen, after having 
taken the Lord's supper at home on Holy Thursday, went 
to shut herself up at the Val-de-Grace to spend the rest of 
Holy- Week in retreat and prayer. We went there, my 
sister and I, very early on Good Friday morning, in order 
to profit by her example. She had risen and dressed by 
five o'clock, and was already employed in meditating on the 
wonders which God on that day had worked in our favour. 
She heard the Passion preached at seven o'clock by a Jesuit, 
who did not make himself admired ; and after the service 
was over, she went to adore the Cross with the saintly 
nuns who live in continual penitence and show by all their 
actions that the Cross is ever in their thoughts and before 
their eyes. She did these things with a devoutness fit to 
edify the most hardened to the laws of God. 


After returning to her chamber she spoke to us, to my 
sister and me, of the instability of the things of earth, of 
the importance of our salvation, the danger in which we 
continually are of failing in what we have to do for the 
accomplishment of that great work, which we agreed at 
that moment was the first and chief of all After his 
dinner the king came to see her, bringing the cardinal with 
him, and about a dozen of the Court who were necessary 
about his person. The queen took great pleasure in show- 
ing them the whole house, and the designs she had for a 
beautiful new convent which should preserve to posterity 
eternal signs of the honour it had received in being the 
place where she went to enjoy solitude. 

The king and Cardinal Mazarin were present at the 
tenebrce. The former was admired by his people, who saw 
him, through the nun's grating, running hither and thither, 
blowing out the candles and behaving like a child that 
loves to play. The minister, who accompanied all his 
actions with great modesty, played the pious and devout 
personage, though perhaps he was not so at alL He took 
care to seem regular in his external actions, and it was 
impossible to reproach him for a vice, or for any irregularity 
which might go by that name. 

When the king had departed and the queen found herself 
alone in her desert, she went into the infirmary to visit a nun 
who was dying of a cancer in her breast, which had rotted 
away the side of it. The smell from the wound was not 
only such as to be offensive to the queen, who liked sweet 
odours, but to men the most used to infection and the misery 
of hospitals. She stayed a long time and chose to see the 
wound dressed; which was a pitiable sight. The disease 
had so eaten away the part on which it had fastened that 
we could see into her body. After this act of charity we 




left the queen to enjoy the rest that is found at the foot 
of altars. The next day she returned to the Palais-Eoyal 
to be present on Easter-day in its parish church and perform 
her devotions. 

The fetes over, nothing was talked of but war and jour- 
neys. The Court had planned to go to the frontier and even 
beyond Amiens and Compiegne, but in spite of this excite- 
ment which seemed to foreshadow battles, the peace that 
reigned in the Court itself and made it pleasurable induced 
the queen to have that fine comedy, with scenery, of which I 
have already spoken played three or four times before her ; 
she was always present and never wearied of it. The last 
time was to entertain Madame de Longueville, who had 
lately returned from Munster. 

This princess, who, though absent, reigned in her family, 
and whose approbation every one desired as a sovereign good, 
returned to Paris in May, 1647, and did not fail to appear 
there with even more lustre than she had when she left it. 
The friendship that the Prince de Conde", her brother, felt for 
her gave authority to her actions and manners, and the gran- 
deur of her beauty and of her mind so increased the cabal 
of her family that she had not been long at Court before she 
occupied it wholly. She became the object of all desires; 
her reception \ruelle\ was the centre of all intrigues, and those 
whom she liked were considered at once as the darlings of 
fortune. Her courtiers were revered by the minister ; and 
before long we shall see her the cause of our revolutions 
and of all the quarrels that came so near destroying France. 

The Prince de Marsillac had formed an intimacy with M. 
le Prince [the Court title given to the Prince de Conde*] ever 
since the queen, changing to many, had changed to him, 
and after promising much had thought it her duty not to 
give him what he asked. In attaching himself to M. le 


Prince through policy, he gave himself to Madame de 
Longueville in a rather more tender manner, joining feel- 
ings of the heart to regard for her grandeur and fortune. 
This gift of himself was apparent to the eyes of the public ; 
and it seemed to the whole Court that the princess received 
it with welcome. In all that she did later, it was clearly 
seen that ambition was not the only emotion that filled her 
soul, for the interests of the Prince de Marsillac held a large 
place in it. She became ambitious for him; for his sake 
she ceased to love repose, and in becoming sensible to that 
affection she became insensible to her own fame. 

Her ideas, her intellect, and the opinion formed of her 
discernment made her the admired of all men; they were 
convinced that her esteem alone was enough to give them 
reputation. Though she ruled all souls by this means, that 
of her beauty was no less potent ; for although she had had 
the small-pox since the regency began and had slightly lost 
the purity of her complexion, the glow of her charms always 
attracted the inclination of those who saw her; above all, 
she possessed in a sovereign degree that which the Spanish 
language expresses by the words : donayre, brio, y bizarm. 
Her figure was admirable ; the very air of her person had a 
charm, the spell of which extended even to her own sex. It 
was impossible to see her without liking her, and wishing to 
please her. Her beauty, nevertheless, consisted more in the 
colouring of her face than in the perfection of its features. 
Her eyes were not large, but beautiful, soft and brilliant, and 
the blue was wonderful, like that of the turquoise. Poets 
could only compare to lilies and roses the tones of her face ; 
and the silvery fair hair that accompanied such marvels 
made her resemble an angel such as the weakness of our 
nature makes us imagine them much more than a woman. 

It may be said that at this time all grandeur, all glory, all 


gallantry were held in this Bourbon family, of which M. le 
Prince was the head, and success was no longer thought a 
good unless it came through their hands. The Prince de 
Conti, 1 younger brother of this brother and sister, had just 
left college and was beginning to appear in society. He was 
handsome in face, but as his figure was deformed he was 
destined for the Church. He possessed many benefices, and 
several persons attached themselves to him in the hope of 
making their fortune on this line. The young prince, find- 
ing that his sister, Mme. de Longueville, had so great a 
reputation, desired to follow her advice and sentiments, and 
allowed himself to be tempted to win respect through her. 
He sought to please her, more even as an honourable man 
than as her brother ; he had intelligence and he succeeded. 

The queen, who was by nature neither jealous nor ambi- 
tious, nevertheless showed some coldness towards Mme. de 
Longueville. She did not like this manner of publicly pro- 
fessing to be a lei esprit; she disliked all the ways of it. 
She herself had reason and good sense ; all that was in her 
was natural and without art; and these two personages, 
according to the measure of their age, both being infinitely 
amiable, were so different in character that it was impos- 
sible that the inferior, who lived as a queen and did not 
render great duty to her sovereign, could please the latter. 

The occupation given by the plaudits of the great world, 
which usually regards with too much admiration the fine 
qualities of people of high birth, had deprived Mme. de 
Longueville of the leisure to read and to give to her mind 
a knowledge sufficiently extended to call her learned. She 
was by nature too much concerned about sentiments ; which 

1 Armand de Bourbon, brother of the great Conde, abbe and prior of 
Cluny. He left the Church and married Anne Martinozzi, niece of Cardi- 
nal Mazarin ; their son Louis-Armand married the daughter of Louis XIV. 
and Mme. de la Valliere. TK. 


passed with her for infallible rules, and were not so always : 
and there was too much affectation in her manner of speak- 
ing and acting, the greatest beauty of which consisted in the 
delicacy of her thoughts and a very just reasoning. She 
seemed constrained; and the refined satire, of which she 
and her courtiers made profession, often fell upon those 
who, wishing to pay her their duty, could not help feeling 
that the honest sincerity which should be observed in polite 
society was apparently banished from hers. The virtues 
and laudable qualities of the most excellent beings are 
mingled with things that are their opposite ; all men share 
the clay from which they get then* origin, and God alone is 

May 9, 1647, the queen took the road to Compiegne, in- 
tending to go as far as Amiens. The cardinal stayed three 
or four days behind her in Paris to conclude some business, 
and started to join her on the 15th of the same month. As 
he was indefatigable in working, and did the duties of all 
the secretaries of State, wishing to know everything, he was 
so continually busy that it was almost impossible to see him. 
Italians are usually haters of a crowd and bustle; for this 
reason the minister disliked to show himself so much so 
that persons of quality murmured at being forced to wait at 
his door until he would see them. They were not repulsed, 
however, by the contempt shown to them, which, apparently, 
produced no other effect upon their souls than to make them 
more humble and grovelling ; but as the French allow them- 
selves to be easily governed by favourites, so are they also 
as easily led into talking against them. The cardinal, know- 
ing this, was accustomed to say, in speaking of these people, 
that he was willing to let them talk provided that they would 
let him do. The murmuring began from ear to ear in the 
antechamber of the man who sneered at their attentions, 


and was uttered in a loud voice as soon as the mutterers 
were out of it. Sometimes I grew weary of hearing him so 
abused ; for, besides the fact that it was often unjust, what 
in itself is useless always seems to me disagreeable. 
! The cardinal had as many lights as a man who was the 
artisan of his own grandeur could have. He had great 
capacity, above all, industry, and marvellous shrewdness in 
leading and amusing men by countless deceptive hopes. He 
never did harm unless from necessity to those who dis- 
pleased him. Usually, he was content to complain of them, 
and these complaints produced explanations which readily 
restored to him the friendship of those who had been un- 
faithful to him, or who thought they had cause to be vexed 
with him. He had the gift of pleasing, and it was impossible 
to keep one's self from being charmed by his sweetness ; but 
this same sweetness was the cause, when not accompanied 
by the benefits it seemed to promise, that those who were 
weary of expecting fell into disgust and vexation. Until 
now, the complaints of private persons had made no great 
impression upon the public mind, and they were founded 
more on the loss of his favour than on hatred to his person. 

The respect that the halo of royal power, which surrounded 
him gloriously, impressed upon the hearts of the king's sub- 
jects arrested much that human malice tried to blame in 
him; and the tranquillity of the Court, joined to fortunate 
successes in war, had given him, up to this time, more repu- 
tation than the worst of the courtiers could give him shame. 
But, little by little, they went on discovering defects in him ; 
some of which could be attributed to all favourites, others 
of which were essentially his. They said that he ignored 
our customs, and did not trouble himself sufficiently to have 
them observed; that he did not take pains, as he should 
have done, to govern the State by its long-established laws ; 


that he did not protect justice and law as he was bound by 
his position as prime minister to do ; and that he thus failed 
in the care he owed to the public weal. These sins of omis- 
sion, though great, could not rightly dishonour him, because 
he may have had good intentions which, if known, would 
have justified him to the public. 

It may be said, nevertheless, that, with the temperament 
he had, these accusations were not far wrong, for it was his 
nature to neglect too much to do good. [He" seemed to 
respect no virtue, and to hate no vice. He appeared to have 
neither; he passed for a man habituated to the custom of 
Christian virtues, but showing no desire for their practice. 
He made no profession of piety, and gave no signs to the 
contrary by any of his actions, unless it were that satirical 
remarks occasionally escaped him which were at variance 
with the respect that a Christian ought to have for whatever 
concerns religion) In spite of his greed he had not yet 
seemed miserly ; and the finances were more wasted at this 
period of his administration by partisans than at any previous 

He also, as I have said elsewhere speaking of the queen, 
granted the dignities of the Church to many persons who 
claimed them from profane motives ; and he did not always 
appoint to the bishoprics men who could honour his choice 
by their virtue and piety, j Eeligion was too much neglected 
by him ; he was always too indifferent to that sacred trust 
which God had committed to him. By nature he was dis- 
trustful ; and one of his greatest cares was to study men in 
order to know them and guard himself from attacks and 
from the intrigues that were formed against him. He pro- 
fessed to fear nothing, and to despise even the cautions that 
were given him about his person, though hi reality the prin- 
ciple of his greatest care was his personal preservation. 


The few days that the minister remained behind in Paris 
served only to still further foment the jealousies that were 
beginning to appear ; because many of those who wished to 
see him could not succeed in doing so. When he got into his 
coach to go away the whole courtyard of the Palais-Eoyal 
was filled with cordons-bleus, great seigneurs, and persons of 
rank, who by their eagerness seemed to be only too happy to 
look at him from a distance. \ All men are naturally slaves 
to fortune ; I can truly say that I never saw any one at Court 
who was not a flatterer, some more, others less. Self-interest, 
which blinds us, takes us unawares and betrays us on occa- 
sions which concern us ; it makes us act with more feeling 
than intelligence; and it happens often enough that we 
become ashamed of our weakness ; which, however, we do 
not perceive except through sage reflection, and after the 
occasion for doing better has passed. 




THOUGH peace could not, at this time have been so glori- 
ous for France, it would not have failed to be convenient and 
advantageous to her. The long wars had exhausted her in 
men, forces, and money. 1 It was doubted in those days 
whether the minister really wished for peace. At any rate, 
the fortunate moment passed, and this period, propitious for 
good fortune, was not destined to soon return. God puts, 
when it pleases Him, limits to our ambition ; He knows how 
to humiliate those who trust in their own wisdom, and shows 
to kings and ministers that they are not the masters of their 
own fate. The cardinal may, perhaps, have had good mo- 
tives for delaying the peace, which seemed to all Europe to 
depend on him only ; but, as it is easy to suspect a minister 

1 Laporte relates in his memoirs dreadful details of this misery, which 
kept on increasing : " The king saw quantities of sick and maimed soldiers 
following him everywhere, and begging for help to relieve their misery, 
without his having a single penny to give them; which amazed people 

" Besides the misery of the soldiers, that of the people was awful ; and 
wherever the Court went the poor peasants flung themselves around it, 
thinking to be in greater safety, because the army devastated the country. 
They brought their cattle, which immediately died from hunger, for they 
dared not lead them to pasture. When the cattle were dead they died 
themselves incontinently, for they had nothing to live on but the Court 
charities, which were middling; each one considering his own interests 
first. They had no shelter from the great heat of the day and the chilli- 
ness of night, except that of awnings, carts, and vans which were in the 
streets. When the mothers were dead the children soon died ; and I saw 
on the bridge of Melun three children lying on their dead mother and 
still sucking her." This went on from 1646 to 1652. FR. ED. 


of having more regard for his private benefit than for the 
public weal, and as the common opinion was that peace 
would have been the rum of that benefit because all the 
strength of the cabinet could have gathered more easily 
against him, Cardinal Mazarin was judged as a man who 
apprehended this very danger. 

The queen, who desired peace, always assured me in those 
days that she knew for a certainty that her minister did his 
best to give it to France and to all Europe. She said that 
what others had reason to apprehend would not happen to 
one in his position, for he was well assured that she would 
never permit intrigues against him, and that the same confi- 
dence she had had in him during the war she would have 
during peace. But he may have deceived the queen, who 
was certainly unable to convince the public. Nevertheless, 
it is possible that he wished for peace at that time, and had 
reason to do so; for besides appearing always to aim at 
the good of the State, he was avaricious and master of the 
finances. It may be believed, therefore, that peace would 
have brought him the means to amass much treasure, which 
to him would possess a considerable charm. 

In Paris the murmuring was great about our losses in the 
war. The honour of the taking of La Basse'e [Flanders] was 
granted to Mare"chal de Gassion, but the blame for the victo- 
ries won by our enemies was put upon Cardinal Mazarin. 
They were adduced as signs of his bad conduct of the war, 
and his adversaries presented them to the public as evident 
proofs of all that they preached against him. 

This murmuring caused several banishments. The Comte 
de Fiesque was the most important of the exiles. He had 
been well-treated by the cardinal, but on the downfall of the 
Due de Beaufort, whose friend he said he was, he declaimed 
against him loudly, telling him, in justification, that between 


two equal friends one should always follow the unfortunate, 
and quit the dominant one. He therefore shared the misfor- 
tune of the one by exile, and showed that he hated the power 
of the other by his speeches. The cardinal, however, urged 
by the friends of the Comte de Fiesque, wishing to forget 
the affronts he thought he had received, brought him back 
from this first exile with every sign of true reconciliation. 
He followed, in thus forgiving, his natural inclination which 
inclined him to gentleness and peace. That of his pardoned 
enemy was different ; he was never content and was always 
rinding fault with the actions of those who governed. For 
this reason his temperament kept him from profiting by the 
truce between them ; so that his conduct forced the minister 
at last to send him away again. The Abbe de Belebat was 
also exiled, and Sarrazin [the poet], for having written satiri- 
cal verses ; together with others of small note who had said 
in wine-shops and public places a few silly things. 

An ordinance was issued, forbidding all persons to talk 
about the affairs of the State ; and the queen showed much 
aversion to those who said more than they ought. She re- 
marked to the Mare'chale d'Estre'es, seeing the arrival in the 
streets of Amiens of Madame de Choisy, who came to speak 
to her on behalf of her brother, Belebat : " That poor woman 
makes me pity her, for her journey is useless ; I am resolved 
to punish severely all those who talk against the govern- 
ment." And the Mare'chale d'Estre'es, in relating to me 
what I here write, added that the queen held firm against 
the prayers of Madame de Choisy, and openly blamed Cardi- 
nal Mazarin for being too kind and too long-suffering. 

The queen after seeing that order was restored on the fron- 
tier and the army of the king in a condition to defend itself, 
left Amiens and went to spend some days at Abbeville. 
From there she came to Dieppe, intending to go to Eouen ; 


but our province and particularly the town of Rouen was so 
insensible to the honour the king did it that it carefully 
evaded the visit. The queen, on her side, pretended to dread 
the fuss and annoyance of the visit and of all the harangues 
they would have to listen to. She resolved to return by 
G-ournay, Gisors, and Pontoise, and stayed but three days at 
Dieppe, though the place was agreeable to her. She liked 
the view of the ocean which she saw from the windows of 
her chamber, where also she could see the fireships burning at 
sea for her amusement. The king went to see the large fine 
ship the Queen of Sweden had sent him, and a naval combat 
took place on the occasion. To crown the joy of the inhabi- 
tants they were allowed the honour of guarding the person 
of the king, which was partly necessary because he had few 
of his guards with him. 

The people of Dieppe, who had always been faithful to 
Henri IV., the king's grandfather, deserved to receive this 
mark of the confidence reposed in them ; and as they took it 
in that spirit they went about the streets shouting that it 
was right to confide the king to their care, for there were 
no Ravaillacs among them. Women ran after their Majes- 
ties, and all the villagers of that region followed them, 
crying out endless benedictions, which, in spite of their 
horrible Norman accent, pleased their Majesties. I heard 
the queen herself say that the affection she recognized in 
this people had been agreeable enough to relieve her of 
the annoyance she usually felt at such importunities. 

Though the queen desired to evade harangues, she could 
not entirely exempt herself from them. The parliament of 
Normandy came to welcome her, also the " Chambre des 
Comptes " and the " Cours des Aides." On this occasion we 
saw what is not extraordinary to see, but what, in itself, is 
ever terrible to the mind of man. The chief judge of Rys, 


about sixty years of age but in vigorous health, died suddenly 
at the head of the staircase as he left the queen's presence, 
and so quickly that there was no interval between his life 
and his death. The king and queen ran to him, to make 
him open his mouth and take remedies, but they found him 
lifeless and their kindness was of no use. I had joined the 
queen at Dieppe to be with her as long as she was in our 
province; I therefore saw this sight, with the feeling of 
horror one has when it is seen near-by. The queen took the 
road to Paris with satisfaction, whither I followed her soon 

I reached Paris August 28, very wearied with my journey, 
because I had been travelling all the time. The country is 
beautiful with repose and solitude only when we can enjoy 
the innocent pleasures that Nature gives in woods and 
streams. I found the queen in the chamber of the Due 
d'Anjou, who was ill with a disease sufficiently important to 
cause uneasiness to so good a mother as herself. 

He was beginning to get better, and his room was filled 
with the most important personages of the Court. This 
annoyance, which is inseparable from illness, was such that 
the little prince was inconvenienced by the fine company 
and entreated the queen to send them all away and stay with 
him alone. The queen told him that she dared not do so, 
because the Princesse de Condd and many persons of rank 
were there. To which he answered : " Eh ! bon Dieu, 
madame, pray laugh at that. Are not you the mistress ? 
What is the good of your crown if not to do what you will ? 
You send me away when it pleases you, though I am your 
son ; is it not fair that each should have his turn ? " I was 
with the queen, and as she thought he was right, she did me 
the honour to say to me : " I must satisfy him ; but not in 
his way ; I shall go myself, and that will draw away those 


who annoy him." She led away the princess, and the rest 
whom she could not dismiss. 

This young prince 1 had intelligence from the time he 
could talk. The clearness of his thoughts was accompanied 
by two fine inclinations, which were beginning to appear in 
him and are necessary to persons of his birth, namely ; liber- 
ality and humanity. It is to be wished that he had been 
deprived of the idle amusements allowed him in his youth. 
He liked to be with women and girls, and to dress them and 
arrange their hair. He knew what became them better than 
any woman ; and his greatest delight, as he grew older, was 
to deck and adorn them, and buy jewels to lend or give to 
those who were his favourites. He was well-made ; the 
features of his face seemed perfect. His black eyes were 
admirably fine and brilliant ; they had sweetness and gravity 
combined. His mouth was in some respects like that of the 
queen, his mother. His black hair, in heavy natural curls, 
suited his complexion ; and his nose, which promised to be 
aquiline, was at that time quite well-formed. It might be 
expected that, if years did not diminish his beauty, he would 
dispute the prize with that of the handsomest women ; but, 
as for his figure, it seemed as though he would never be 

That same day, in the evening, the king's lawyers came 
before the queen at her command. She sent for them to 
complain of the parliament, which opposed a certain tax laid 
upon provisions, which up to this time had not been levied 
because the president, de Mesmes, holding the sessions of 
1646, had forbidden its being put in force. But in spite 
of this prohibition, the affair was again brought up for dis- 
cussion in the Council, where, on account of the need of 

1 Philippe d'Orleans, husband of Henrietta of England, and secondly of 
Elisabeth-Charlotte, Princess Palatine, the mother of the Regent. TR. 


having money, it was proposed to maintain the royal author- 
ity in this matter. 

The parliament, which assumed to have the right of ex- 
amining the edicts that laid burdens on the people, having 
maintained what President de Mesmes had done, and ordered 
that very humble remonstrances should be sent to the queen 
on this affair, their resistance made the Court resolve to 
offer them other edicts less difficult to pass. A conference 
was held on this subject at the Palais-Royal, when the coun- 
sel for the king and that for the parliament were present. 
The queen was not present, because it is a rule that subjects 
shall not confer with masters. They all sat down at a large 
table; the Due d'Orle'ans at the head, Cardinal Mazarin 
opposite to him ; next below Monsieur was the chancellor, 
and next below the cardinal was President de Mesmes ; the 
rest according to rank. D'Emery, at that time superin- 
tendent of finance, was at a corner of the table, but had no 
seat there ; and the four secretaries of State were in their 
usual place. It was expected that the chancellor would 
make a speech ; but the cardinal had sent him a memoran- 
dum, made by Lyonne, his secretary, on which were written, 
by his order, the principal points of the speech. The chan- 
cellor felt that he could not maintain the credit he had 
acquired whenever he spoke in public if he submitted to 
this dictation; he therefore preferred to say nothing, and 
excused himself as being indisposed. 

At this conference it was finally determined to pass the 
original tariff, because the parliament considered that by 
the new propositions made to them the advantage to the 
people would be no greater. They resolved merely to 
modify it, and they decreed that it should be levied for 
two years only, at the end of which time they forbade that 
it be levied any longer ; and at the same time the Cour des 


Aides was forbidden to interfere. In getting the money, 
Cardinal Mazarin was satisfied ; so was the queen, because 
she was saved by this agreement the fatigue of going to 
parliament in person to get the new edicts passed; which 
she would have been forced to do had the affair not ended 

On the llth of September, 1647, we saw, arriving from 
Italy, three nieces of Cardinal Mazarin, and a nephew. 1 
Two Mancini sisters and the nephew were the children of 
the youngest sister of his Eminence ; the third niece was a 
Martinozzi, daughter of the minister's eldest sister. 

The eldest of the little Mancinis was a pleasing brunette 
with a handsome face, about twelve or thirteen years of age. 
The second, also a brunette, had a long face and pointed 
chin. Her eyes were small but lively, and it might be 
expected that when fifteen years old she would have some 
charm. According to the rules of beauty it was impossible 
at this time to grant her any, except that of having dimples 
hi her cheeks. Mademoiselle de Martinozzi was blonde ; 
her features were beautiful, and she had much sweetness 
in her eyes. She gave promise of becoming very handsome, 
and had we been astrologers enough to divine in her face 
the prospects of her fortune as we did those of her beauty, 
we should have known even then that she was destined to 
high rank. The last two were of the same age, we were 
told about nine or ten years old. 

Madame de Nogent went to Fontainebleau, by the cardi- 

1 Cardinal Mazarin had two sisters living in Rome ; the eldest married 
to Comte Martinozzi, had two daughters ; the other, married to Signor 
Mancini, had three sons and five daughters. The eldest Mancini became 
Madame de Mercoeur and died young. The second was Olympe, Comtesse 
de Soissons ; the third was Marie, Louis XIV.'s love, finally married to 
Prince Colonna ; the fourth was Hortense, Duchesse de Mazarin ; the 
fifth was Marie-Anne, Duchesse de Bouillon. Anne Martinozzi, daughter 
of the cardinal's eldest sister, married the Prince de Conti. TK. 


nal's order, to meet them. The minister would never incur 
great obligations to any of the more important persons of 
the Court, for fear of being forced into inconvenient grati- 
tude. He treated this affair like a man whose chief care 
is to seem uninterested ; and the opinion his familiar cour- 
tiers formed was that he abandoned these children to the 
Comte de Nogent, a great flatterer and capable of carrying 
flattery to extremities, expecting him to do them the honours 
of the great world, while he himself could always say, " It 
is the humour of that man," and turn him into ridicule with 
the queen if he thought it useful ; in fact, he often treated 
him in that manner about his conceited speeches and 

This man [Nogent] had all his life imitated wit; he 
affected to make people laugh, talking incessantly, though 
no one could accuse him of saying' anything. In this way 
he attained to the luck of making a great fortune. There 
was no person of rank at Court who received greater bene- 
fits from it than he, whether by private privileges, by 
prerogatives and preferences to favours of distinction, or 
through the great property he had begun to amass under 
Cardinal Eichelieu, who contributed more than any one to 
make him rich. This great sayer of nothings found means 
through silliness to rise and to obtain that which his birth 
denied to him, and which virtue and great merit would not 
have given him so easily. He had intelligence after his 
fashion; he was not malicious, and I never heard him say 
harm of any one, no matter who. Perhaps on great occa- 
sions the desire to please made him commit great faults in 
the sight of God, but as for what appeared externally, if 
he did not protect the unfortunate, neither did he contribute 
to ruin them. He gave pleasure when he could, in his own 
way, which was to turn all things into jest. Though it was 


difficult to respect him, it was still more difficult to hate 
him, for he never gave any real grounds for doing so. 

This illustrious chatterer was the man who, by means of 
his wife, presented to the queen the nephew and nieces of 
her minister. She wished to see them the evening of their 
arrival, and saw them with pleasure. She thought them 
pretty, and the time the children spent in her presence 
was employed in remarks -on their appearance. Madame 
de Senece' proposed to the queen to go and see them the 
next day and pay them her compliments; but she was 
made to understand that the cardinal did not wish them to 
be visited, on the plea that being lodged in his house where 
he liked to be in peace, visitors would disturb him much 
if he allowed them to come there. 

When this revered uncle, so fortunate and so powerful, 
saw the arrival of his nieces, he left the queen the moment 
that they entered her room, and went off to bed hi his own 
house. After the queen had seen them they were taken to 
the cardinal ; but he seemed not to care for them much ; on 
the contrary, he jested about those who were silly enough 
to show them attentions. But, despite this scorn, he cer- 
tainly had great designs based on these little girls. His 
indifference about them was all pure comedy; and by that 
we may judge that it is not only on the stage that comic 
actors play good parts. 

The next day the nieces were again brought to the queen, 
who kept them some moments near her to examine them 
better. Cardinal Mazarin was there also; but seemed no 
more touched by them than he was on the first day. After 
this, they were shown in public. Every one hastened to see 
them, and the spectators made a point of extolling them, 
sometimes as very agreeable, and sometimes as very beauti- 
ful; they even gave them intellect on sight, and all the 


praises that could be thought of were amply bestowed by 
their liberality. 

While the courtiers were hastening to talk in this way, the 
Due d'Orldans came up to the Abbe' de La Eiviere and me, who 
were talking together near a window, and said in a low voice : 
" So many persons are round these little girls that I doubt if 
their lives are safe : they will be smothered by force of being 
looked at." The Mare'chal de Villeroy, who had the gravity 
of a minister, came up at the same time and said : " See 
those little girls who now are not rich ; they will soon have 
fine ch^teaus, good incomes, splendid jewels, beautiful silver 
services, and perhaps great dignities ; but as for the boy, it 
needs time to make him great, and he may only see his for- 
tune foreshadowed," meaning that his uncle might fall 
before he was old enough to be raised very high ; in which, 
without knowing it, the mare'chal prophesied truly. 

The girls became greater ladies than he thought, but the 
boy never really enjoyed his luck, for death robbed him 
of the favour of him who might have put him in the way to 
be respected of all men. An Italian friend of mine told me, 
some time later, that people in Eome were amazed when they 
heard in what way these children had been received in 
France; and especially that princes and great seigneurs 
thought of marrying them. In their own land and according 
to their birth, these nieces would have had few suitors, and 
few people in Eome would have nocked to see them ; but the 
rank they had at our Court as soon as they came there is suffi- 
cient proof of the position of him who gave the lustre which 
Italians could not approve. They laughed at our nation for 
allowing itself to be governed by a man whom they did not 
like because they knew him too well ; it is natural to men 
to admire only distant things : Fugga il tetto nativo, chi gloria 
brama. " Flee the native roof, you who to glory aspire." 


The Princess Palestrina, Donna Anna Colonna, who re- 
turned to Italy soon after their arrival in Paris, assured me 
that the cardinal told her in confidence, speaking of his 
nieces, that already the highest men in the kingdom had 
asked him for them. And yet he had said to his friends 
some years earlier, pointing to certain statues he had brought 
from Eome, that those were the only relatives he meant to 
bring to France ; but, like the sage, he changed his mind, and 
let himself be urged by the queen, to whom he would not re- 
fuse this favour, to allow his nieces come. He did nothing 
in this that was contrary to reason; it was just that he 
should let his own family share his grandeur, and use them 
to strengthen still further his own fortunes. If those who 
are masters do not attempt to limit a minister's ambition, he 
is excusable if, during their power, he desires more than the 
just reward of his services. It is natural to men to want 
more glory, more happiness, more wealth than they have, 
and often more than they deserve. 

The next day, at the queen's lever, a little affair happened 
to a Court lady, vexatious and harsh enough to be put in the 
list of mortifications which persons often taste in the course 
of their lives. The Duchesse de Schomberg, on giving up the 
name, as I have told, of Madame de Hautefort, gave up also 
her claim to the office of lady-in-waiting (then still pos- 
sessed by her grandmother, Madame de La Flotte) for a com- 
pensation of two hundred thousand francs. But, as the 
longing for favour is an invisible chain which attaches every 
one to the person of kings, some from inclination, others from 
self-interest, and as few ever willingly detach themselves, 
Madame de Schomberg did all she could to recover the good 
graces of the queen, and would have liked to resume with 
her the familiar intercourse of times past. 

It is the rule that the lady of honour shall have the right 


to serve the queen by handing her the chemise unless she 
cedes that honour to a princess of the blood ; and when the 
lady-in-waiting is present she shares the service in certain 
things with the lady-of-honour. Madame de Schomberg, 
since her marriage, when alone with the queen had had 
the honour to serve her ; and the queen had pleasantly re- 
ceived the service, to do her a favour and not rebuff her, 
but never as though she had a right to take the part of 
lady-in-waiting on such occasions. 

She attempted one day to enjoy the same privilege when 
the Princesse de Conde* and Madame de Senece" were present. 
The queen then said to her, and rather severely, for the old 
friendship was entirely passed: "Madame, do you not see 
that Madame de Senece* is here and you are taking her office ? " 
The Duchesse de Schomberg answered rather brusquely that 
she saw her very well, but the service she was doing was her 
own. The queen, a little excited, said at once : " Your office, 
madame ! Did you not resign it when you married, for two 
hundred thousand francs which I gave you in compensa- 
tion ? " " Yes, madame," replied Madame de Schomberg, " but 
I have not yet received the money. That is why I think I 
have the right to exercise the office." " Oh ! very well, 
madame ; you will be paid," answered the queen ; " there is 
enough money in France for that ; but you must know that 
it is difficult to re-enter my heart when once a person has 
gone out of it." The lady, keenly touched and pained, an- 
swered only by tears, and followed the queen the whole day, 
unable to keep from weeping before her. She had done the 
thing against her will, so as not to displease her husband, 
who wished her to obtain a return of past favours. 

The queen, moved to pity, spoke to her and made her 
several caresses to soften her pain, but, as this lady told me 
later, she returned home resolved never again to try to obtain 


the queen's good graces. She contented herself after that 
with seeing her like the other duchesses, who only go to the 
Louvre at the hour of the cercle ; and shortly after, without 
fuss or complaint, she and the Mare*chal de Schomberg went 
to their own house and government to live the Christian life 
which alone gives peace of mind and tranquillity of soul. 

This little tale made a great noise at Court; every one 
spoke of it as he or she personally felt. Some blamed 
Madame de Schomberg for imprudence in risking such 
displeasure ; others accused the queen of harshness, which 
is a thing she never felt to any one. 

Some hours later, having asked her what the affair was 
which was making so much stir, she told me what I have 
just written down ; and she told it with the more kindness 
because, as she said, she was grieved that the lady had 
forced her, against her disposition, to cause her this vexa- 
tion, for she did not like to give pain to any one whomsoever ; 
but that she could not let herself be taken for a dupe, and 
she saw plainly that Madame de Schomberg acted in that 
manner, not to regain her- friendship (which motive would 
have been kindly), but to claim her former office for the 
purpose of keeping it for her sister, d'Escars, for whom she, 
the queen, had a great aversion ; and it was not just that 
because she was a queen she should have to be served, 
against her will, by those she did not like. The Duchesse 
de Schomberg afterwards told me the same thing, and said 
that she had hoped to preserve the office for her sister. 

The queen, who found pleasure in change, left Paris, 
September 15 [1647] to spend the autumn in that beautiful 
habitation of Fontainebleau, leaving in Paris the little Mon- 
sieur, who was not yet sufficiently recovered to bear the 
fatigue of a journey. The Mare"chal de Villeroy, anxious to 
please the man who had made him the king's governor, put 


it into the heart of the young king to wish to take the 
youngest of the three Mancini girls on this trip; and he 
asked it so eagerly of the queen that she willingly re- 
quested the cardinal not to send his little niece to the 

The evening before the queen's departure, I went up to 
the minister, to pay him the homage due to one who re- 
ceived the same from the greatest in the kingdom. He 
returned my compliments by making a sham quarrel, as he 
frequently did; for it was his way to give us often such 
alarms. He told me that he was informed that Sarrazin, 
the dismissed poet, had made satirical and malicious verses 
in my apartments, which attacked the person of the queen. 
My mind was so far from thinking anything of that nature 
that at first I did not sufficiently notice the horror of this 
insult. I merely answered, as if laughing, that the joke 
was hard on a person like me who took no pleasure in 
satirical verses against my greatest enemies; and that I 
thought I should do myself a wrong to answer such false- 
hood seriously, though it was four years since I had seen 
the man. This was the truth. From that I passed to other 
matters about which I had to speak to him, and said no 

' I am convinced I paid my court to him very ill ; for, not 
wishing to do us real benefits, he took pleasure in causing 
us false anxieties ; so that we might feel ourselves obliged 
to him for pardoning our imaginary wrong-doings and leav- 
ing us in peace. At other times he treated persons with 
such gentleness and apparent good-will that it was impos- 
sible to avoid being charmed by him; when he wished 
to please he deceived the most distrustful persons. But 
towards me such favours were rare. After I returned home, 
recalling this malicious act which the minister's policy or 


the baseness of some malignant mind had done me, I spent 
several hours of the night in murmuring against the world, 
against the ambitions which delude us and the weakness 
which retains us in it. 

I complained to the queen, who thought I had good 
reason to be displeased ; and in spite of the approbation she 
usually gave to all that came from the cardinal, her natural 
equity made her regret that he had listened to this tale and 
had spoken of it to me as a believable story. She assured 
me, moreover, that she would tell him what she thought of 
it, and I venture to believe that she made him see that the 
accusation he had made to me was wholly unreasonable. 

This princess was full of kindness and justice; she was 
not suspicious, not easy to prejudice, and when they told 
her evil of any one of whom she had a good opinion she 
resisted strongly. We should always have had smooth seas 
with her, without tempests, if he in whom she had confi- 
dence had not too often had the power to change her own 
impressions by the pains he took to despise before her those 
she esteemed ; but when he wanted to ruin any one it was ; 
necessary, in order to succeed, that he should arrange matters / 
in a way to deceive her with the appearances of a real 

As my case could not convince her, I felt on this occasion 
as on the others I have mentioned, how upright her soul 
was when her natural instincts were not darkened. I can 
also say with truth that whatever she knew that might 
harm those to whom she wished well she never told to her 
minister ; and among those whom he hated and wished to 
drive from Court there were some whom she supported 
against him solely because of their innocence, either be- 
cause it was better known to her than that of others, or 
because they really had more. The cardinal often said to 

VOL.1. 14 


Le Tellier (as the latter told me himself) that the queen's 
piety hindered him, and that she yielded with difficulty on 
whatever she thought to be for the glory of God. She had 
insight enough to know the right ; and if she had had the 
strength to always defend it, the pens of historians could 
not have praised her enough ; but she was too distrustful of 
herself, and her humility easily convinced her of her 
incapacity to govern the State. 

This feeling, in some respects unjust and unreasonable, 
did much to establish the power of her minister, who, with- 
out it, might have worthily filled the office in which the 
late king placed him and the queen maintained him. If he 
had thought himself less necessary to her he would have 
taken more pains to deserve the esteem of the people. If 
he had had reason to fear the ill offices that others might 
do him with her, he would have had more consideration for 
right-minded persons, who would always have had influence 
upon her because by nature she felt good-will to them. 
And also, if the queen had esteemed herself more and main- 
tained her own sentiments (as she did sometimes when she 
thought her j duty required it), her good intentions would 
have improved those of her minister, who really had fine 
qualities which, if well managed by a power above his 
own, would have made him a minister worthy of general 

(^^The greatness of his genius placed him above other men, 
hot only by luck but by the superiority of his knowledge. 
Never did any of those who were in his confidence and 
intimacy have power over him, unless some necessity in his 
affairs or his designs required it. He had great experience 
in foreign affairs, and was capable of the highest enterprises. 
He worked hard. His policy was shrewd ; he was clever at 
intrigue ; he attained his ends by circumlocutions and wiles 



that were well-nigh impenetrable. He was not malignant' 
or cruel. At first he had not even an excessive ambition ; 
for up to that time he had declined the great establishments \ 
that other favourites obtain. He had taken neither places, \ 
governments, dignities, nor offices. Nor did his avidity for i 
money appear then such as it really was ; and those who \ 
accused him of it were unjust. Many who courted him 
owed him great favours, and of those many were much 
richer than he. He was quite agreeable in person ; and in 
spite of his defects he will always be spoken of as an ex- 
traordinary man. His prodigious power will amaze the 
whole world, and the marvellous events of his rise to for- 
tune will lift him very high. He has had the destiny of 
great men, alike in his good and his evil fortunes ; he may 
also have their reputation, for I doubt if all the centuries 
put together can produce a greater. 

The Prince of Wales [Charles II.] came to Fontainebleau 
to see the king and the queen. They entertained him with 
balls, comedies, and excursions. He seemed to have in- 
creased in good looks. The unhappy state of his affairs 
made every one regard him with the tenderness that accom- 
panies pity, and through that sentiment his good qualities 
received greater lustre. He even showed some beginning 
of inclination for Madame de ChStillon, which was thought 
a good augury. His mind, however, was never brilliant 
and he stuttered somewhat. In that he resembled his 
father, who, as I have heard, did so a little, and his grand- 
father, the late king [James I.] who did so much. The king 
and he behaved together like young princes who felt em- 
barrassed by each other's presence ; both were shy, and with- 
out that freedom of spirit which intercourse with the world 
gives to private individuals. The king, whose beauty had 
charms, though young was already tall. He was grave, and 


in his eyes could be seen a serious expression which marked 
his dignity. He was even prudent enough to say little, from 
fear of not speaking well. The Prince of Wales kept silence 
also ; but they had at least the comfort of banishing the 
ceremonies of their rank, which softened the rest. 

The Court having returned to Paris in October, the king, in 
the midst of the finest possible health, suddenly, November 
10, left his games, wearied of the comedy, and then told the 
queen that he felt ill and had pains in his loins. At first it 
was thought to be nothing, but the next day his fever was 
high, which alarmed the queen very much, who now feared 
a continued fever. A courier was sent to the Due d'Orle'ans, 
who was at one of his country-houses, telling him of the 
king's state. 

Two days later the disease degenerated into small-pox, 
which at first consoled the queen, who had feared something 
worse. She left her apartment on the same day and slept in 
that of the patient. As the king's fever continued, her 
anxiety increased, and the doctors were unable to reassure 
her. All the young people who laid claims to beauty and 
those who had not had the small-pox left the Palais-Eoyal. 
I think I was the only one, who had not renounced youth, 
who would not leave the queen on this occasion. I own that 
I made an effort over myself to give her this proof of my 
zeal, for though I had had the disease, it is quite common to 
have it twice, and commoner still to think of one's own 
safety. My sister, moreover, had not had it, and I might 
have conveyed the infection to her. But God preserved us. 

The king, up to the eleventh day of his illness, gave the 
queen no greater anxiety than she had felt before the small- 
pox appeared. She suffered from seeing him suffer ; but as 
it is a disease which is common to children, she was quite 
resolved to be comforted for the loss of his beauty provided 


his life was saved. On the 21st of the month, at nine in the 
morning, while the queen had gone to Notre-Dame to make 
her devotions, the king grew worse ; the fever increased ; he 
fainted, and remained in that condition for three-quarters of 
an hour. 

The queen, on her return, finding him in this state was 
struck to the heart with such grief that it needed but little 
more to kill her. All that day the king, according to the 
doctors' opinion, was in the greatest danger, and the queen 
never ceased to weep. The Due d'Orle'ans was constantly 
beside her ; and this increased her pain ; she found no com- 
fort or consolation in shedding tears before him. That eve- 
ning, about midnight, the king grew better; but the next 
day his illness increased very much. On Sunday, the four- 
teenth day, he was so ill that the doctors thought him in 
danger of immediate death, because, since the eleventh day, 
on which he had fainted, the small-pox had gone in, and 
four bleedings which were taken did not diminish his fever. 
Its heat was so great that it entirely dried up whatever had 
issued from his body. 

All that day the queen seemed to choke ; for her nature 
was not to weep, and when she was in sorrow she usually 
shut it up within herself. This sorrow made her feel keenly 
all that love and fear can implant in a soul possessed by 
a violent passion. Though she followed no policy on this 
occasion, yet, having naturally a firm mind and much reserve 
in her outward actions, she did not choose to show her 
weakness, especially before those who would have profited 
by her misfortune. But, as nature cannot continue in such 
a state without some sign appearing, she fainted on that 
day by the king's bedside ; and that night, very late, having 
retired, with no witnesses but the cardinal, a few of her 
women, and myself, she wept bitterly. Seeing her in that 


state, we begged her to go to bed ; which she did ; but could 
find no rest in any place. At last, about midnight, God 
gave her back the child so dear to her, and whose life was 
so necessary to France. The fever lessened and the small- 
pox came out once more. Monday and Tuesday the doctors 
purged him, and thenceforth the disease diminished until 
he was completely cured. The queen's alarm having passed, 
she told us that she felt in the midst of it that, had she 
lost the king, she could not have survived him, and that 
the submission she should have wished to show to the divine 
will would doubtless not have prevented her grief from 
strangling her. 

During this illness the king seemed to those about him to 
be a prince wholly inclined to gentleness and kindness. He 
spoke humanely to all who served him, said obliging and 
intelligent things, and was docile to all that the doctors 
desired of him. The queen received marks of affection from 
him which touched her keenly ; at all moments he called to 
her, and begged her to stay by him, assuring her that her 
presence lessened his illness. The queen told us afterwards 
that in all her sorrow she had feared losing him from tender- 
ness only; and that she should have mourned for Mm 
because she loved him, and in his quality as son, not as king ; 
which, she said, in no wise touched her. 

Frenchmen had reason to hope that they would one day 
see this young king become as great through the qualities 
of his soul as he already was by his crown. They regarded 
him as a king given by God himself in answer to the public 
prayer, and as a child of benediction ; his perfections filled 
the eyes of his subjects, partly by his person, partly by his 
inclinations, which all seemed good and tending towards vir- 
tue and glory. The impress of the power to which God des- 
tined him was already marked on his person and on all his 


actions. We never saw in him those headstrong sentiments 
which are natural to most children. The queen, through 
reason and the obedience he gave to her, led him always to 
do what she wished of him. 

I often noticed with astonishment that in his plays and 
amusements the king never laughed. Those who had the 
honour to approach him told him too often, I thought, that 
he was the master ; and when he had some little differences 
with Monsieur, occasions which happened of course in their 
childhood, the queen always insisted that he should be 
obeyed, and seemed to desire that his power should be re- 
spected as much as he was loved. All these anticipated 
grandeurs could not seem dangerous to her, in view of the 
natural innocence of the young monarch; which gave her 
reason to hope that God, the author of Nature, in sending 
him from on high, as He did to Solomon, a spirit of wisdom 
with the gift of persisting in virtuous ways, would render 
his life pleasing in His sight, and his reign accompanied by 
continual prosperity. " The principality of the virtuous 
shall be stable." 

As the king grew better, the mind of the queen recovered 
its usual tranquillity ; and the Court, on the arrival of the 
Prince de Conde*, was filled with additional grandeur and 
adorned with fresh beauty through the numbers of worthy 
persons whom he brought with him. He had known of the 
extreme danger of the king, but would not hasten his return, 
expressly not to show eagerness at a time when it might 
have seemed that he came only to share the power of the 
Due d'Orle'ans, of which, apparently, he might have claimed 
the greater share. He maintained this moderation, though 
the queen had sent several couriers urging him to come. 

A few days after the happy recovery of the king, the suffer- 
ing the queen had endured from his illness, and the violence 


she had done herself in not wholly showing it, her wakeful 
nights and anxieties, gave her a fever which was very strong 
for two days. Cardinal Mazarin seemed alarmed ; but when 
the doctors thought she was about to have a severe illness 
the fever suddenly left her, which caused much joy to those 
who loved her and had reason to be anxious at her illness. 
The evening of her amendment, as I approached her and 
wished to touch her pulse to see if her state was as good as 
we hoped, she did me the honour to put her hand in mine ; 
and I having kissed it with joy at finding it so cool, she said 
she did not doubt that I was very glad of her improvement, 
adding these noble words: that death had never caused 
her fear ; but in the state in which she left the king and the 
kingdom, France and her children caused her pity ; that this 
made her offer some wishes for life ; but that the greatest of 
them all was that God would give her grace to employ it well 
in His service. 

The Christmas festivities stopped for awhile all public and 
private matters. The -queen, being at the Val de Gr^ce, saw 
the little Monsieur, whom she had not yet dared to see for fear 
of giving him the infection. A few days later he returned 
to the Palais-Royal, and was allowed to see the king, whom 
he did not recognize, so changed was he. All the ladies 
returned to Court, and the king was shown to every one, 
though still in a bad state from the swelling and redness of 
his face. He scolded those who had abandoned him ; which 
was taken as a good omen, and as a sign that he would 
not be so indifferent to friendship as princes usually are. 
Though I had not quitted the queen during his illness, I had 
not approached him. The queen, seeing that I made an 
effort to follow her into his room, where, in spite of the glory 
of a crown, there was danger, commanded me not to enter 
it. I had, therefore, my share in the king's little plaint, for 


which I consoled myself like the rest, who were not much 
afflicted by it, but felt honoured by his resentment. 

Thus ended this year [1647], without much happiness, or 
yet real evils. Nevertheless, the ablest men at Court and 
the best-informed told me on that day that they feared the 
future of the State would be troubled by many evils, in view 
of the bad disposition that existed in all minds. The queen, 
on the contrary, on the evening of the same day, said to us, 
as she was seated at her toilet-table while undressing, that 
it gave her joy to enter upon a new year, because in the one 
just ending she had had nothing but trouble, little success 
in war, and much anxiety from the illness of her children, 
whom she had feared to lose. But she was deceived in her 
hopes, and had cause to regret the repose she had hitherto 
enjoyed. The troubles that came upon her later taught her 
that the human being knows neither his strength nor his 
weakness; that our desires mislead us, and that we ought 
to allow ourselves to be guided by that superior Power who 
rules us. Otherwise, we find that by our own choice we 
are oftener led to evil than to good. 



ON the Epiphany the queen, having made her devotions, 
passed the whole evening in great solitude. As she liked 
repose, and her own power was a matter of indifference to 
her, no one was urgent to enter her cabinets when she was 
alone. The Due d'Orle'ans and the cardinal supped that 
evening with the Prince de Conde*; and when such feasts 
occurred all the courtiers desired to be in the train of one of 
the three; so that the sovereign's apartment was left de- 
serted. Far from objecting to this, she was delighted that 
her creatures should follow the minister, and, without en- 
joying the pleasures of solitude, which are books and revery, 
she remained very willingly alone, without either pleasure 
or trouble. 

This evening, in order to amuse the king, she did us the 
honour to have a cake brought to Madame de Bregy, my 
sister, and me, which we divided with her; drinking her 
health in hippocras, which she ordered for us; and she 
admitted that on this occasion she should, in spite of her 
natural inclinations, have felt bored without our company ; 
which was a great favour, for, truth to tell, her kindness had 
more share than her heart in the good treatment we received 
from her. God alone, the king and Monsieur, her minis- 
ter and his affairs absorbed her wholly; and the cardinal 
was all the more agreeable to her because he took great 
care to keep her unoccupied, and was glad to relieve her 
of the greater part of the trouble her regency imposed 
upon her. 


The next day the comedies began again by the wish of the 
king and the whole Court ; and the ladies, much pleased at 
this revival, came in full dress, intending to drive away for- 
ever from the Palais-Eoyal all recollection of unpleasant 
things. The king appeared with his blotched and swelled 
face, and looked the uglier because he had so lately appeared 
in beauty; and as it was at the theatre on Martinmas-day 
that he was taken ill, Beautru [one of the first members of 
the Academy, and ambassador to England and to Spain] was 
fain to say that he came to return his disease to the stage. 

January 7, eight hundred merchants of Paris assembled 
and rebelled against a tax imposed upon the proprietors 
of houses, or for other reasons of which I did not take 
particular notice. They deputed ten of then- number to speak 
on their behalf to the Due d'Orle'ans. These deputies went 
to the Luxembourg and entered the duke's room, demanding 
justice and letting him know they were resolved not to 
suffer these taxes; for, in spite of the universal poverty of 
the kingdom, Paris, at any rate, chose to be rich, and would 
not hear of giving money to the king. The Due d'Orle'ans 
made them hope for some amelioration, promised to speak of 
it to the queen, showed them their duty and the obedience 
they owed to her will, and dismissed them with the usual 
saying of princes : " We will see about it." 

The next day the same troop assembled again. It went 
to the Palais de Justice, and finding there the President de 
Thore*, son of d'Emery, superintendent of finances, they 
shouted against him, called him the son of the tyrant, and 
from threats they came within an ace of attacking him per- 
sonally ; but, thanks to some of his friends, he escaped from 
their hands. The next day they muttered loudly against 
him, and threatened to make him suffer for the wrongs that 
were being done them. This man, whose firmness will be 


seen on several occasions to equal that of the most illus- 
trious Komans, told them, without emotion, that if they 
did not keep silence and obey the king's will, he would 
have gallows erected in the square on which to hang in- 
stantly the most refractory among them. To which these 
insolent people answered that they would use those gallows 
themselves for the wicked judges from whom no justice 
could be got and who were slaves to royal favour. 

On that same day, January 9, so famous for its events, the 
masters of petitions \maitres de requetes magistrates whose 
duty it was to present petitions and other written demands 
to the council of State] mutinied also in the council because 
it was proposed to increase their body by a dozen new offi- 
cers. As they had bought their offices at a high price, and 
this increase in number would diminish their value, they de- 
clared that many families in Paris would thus become em- 
barrassed, and so, resenting an evil they feared, they refused 
to report the cases of private persons, and swore among them- 
selves on the Holy Gospels not to allow this increase, and 
to resist the persecution that might be made upon them from 
the Court side. They promised one another that if any of 
them lost his office by this opposition to the will of the 
king, they would all subscribe to repay him the value 
of the said office. 

They went to see Cardinal Mazarin; and one of them 
named Gomin, spoke so strongly and with such boldness 
that the cardinal was startled. Council was held in the 
queen's room to decide on the remedies for these turmoils. 
D'fimery had the whole people on his shoulders shouting 
against him; and the chancellor had the masters of peti- 
tions to restrain and console. The latter really complained 
less of d'fimery than of him who governed all ; but, not daring 
at present to fulminate against the cardinal, they attacked 


the superintendent strongly and cast their wrath in the 
meantime upon him. Therefore, in consequence of these 
matters, the council sat long on that day and opinions were 
much contested. 

The chief president [premier president] and the king's 
lawyers were sent for, a resolution was taken to issue ful- 
minating decrees against all parties; and then, it being 
now evening, the Prince de Cond and the cardinal went 
to sup with the Due d'Orle'ans, to bury under good cheer 
and cards this beginning of troubles which did not cause 
as much uneasiness to the princes as it did to the minister. 
He now began to see that he was the object of public 
hatred, and that this hatred would fill the princes of the 
blood with the sweet delusions that please great personages, 
making them hope that through troubles and changes their 
authority would increase as that of the king and queen 
Diminished; for, as the Spanish proverb says, Rio turbio 
fjanancia de pescadores ; "troubled waters are the fisher's 

On the night of the 10th the burghers vented their ill- 
humour by constant firing. The lieutenant of police having 
sent through all the quarters of the city to know the cause, 
they answered that they were trying their arms for the 
king's service, adding that if they were asked to pay money 
they would follow the example of the Neapolitans and 
revolt. I am even assured that men had gone from house 
to house during the night advising the burghers to lay in 
a stock of food. All this was caused by cabals against the 
Court by the parliament, by the masters of petitions, and 
by that spirit of rebellion which some demon, visible or 
invisible, was beginning to inspire in the soul of each indi- 
vidual. Since then this demon has produced all that we 
have seen of civil discord; it has caused great evils, and 


made our condition such that we can never in our old age 
resemble our fathers, whose custom it was to laud the days 
of their youth and prefer them to the present. 

On the morning of the llth, the queen, on going to mass 
at Notre-Dame (which she did regularly every Saturday), 
was followed by about two hundred women into the church 
itself. They tried to kneel before her to make her pity 
them; but the guards prevented their approach, and the 
queen passed on without listening to their clamours. She 
told us, on her return, that she had been tempted to speak 
to them. Surely the words of a queen so amiable would 
have been powerful over those minds ; but she owned to us 
that she had feared the insolence of such canaille, and had 
therefore thought it wiser not to enter upon the subject with 
people who never listened to reason, who could not compre- 
hend it, having in their heads only their petty interests and 
being consequently unable to appreciate the causes, however 
just they may be, that compel kings to ask them for money. 

After midday a council was held on immediate affairs, 
before which the chief president appeared; and after long 
consultation on remedies for the evil, it was decided that 
the queen should order the king's lawyers (who had been 
summoned for the purpose) to take measures to maintain 
the authority of the king. That evening commands were 
issued to the regiment of the Gardes to remain under arms, 
and sentinels and guard-houses were posted in all quarters 
of the city. The Mare*chal de Schomberg was commanded 
to do the same with the Swiss guards, and Paris on that 
night was like a military camp. The noise of fire-arms 
was incessant ; and these small appearances of war fore- 
shadowed a revolt of greater consequence, which, according 
to the behaviour of the people and the bad disposition of the 
public mind was likely to lead to some dangerous result. 


On the morning after the 12th, the king went to Notre- 
Dame to hear mass, and to make his first outing after his 
illness an act of grace and gratitude to Him who had 
restored him to life. It was more than a week since the 
queen had expressed the desire that the king should make 
this little trip through Paris, therefore it was decided not to 
delay it, lest it should be said they showed fear of those 
who were so anxious to inspire it in the queen and in her 
minister. But instead of having his usual guard for such 
occasions, he went with every necessary precaution around 
him. All that could serve to magnify the royal majesty 
attended him, in order to excite by that means in the 
minds of the people the respect that such things usually 
produce in feeble souls. Many of the principal officers 
were on horseback, and nearly the whole Court accompanied 
him with the usual guards. While the king was at Notre- 
Dame, the queen held a council, at which it was resolved 
that their Majesties should go a second time before parlia- 
ment to pass the edict creating the new masters of petitions, 
and the other decrees which were murmured against ; and 
this was done in order not to show relaxation of the resolves 
already taken, and to make evident that the resistance of 
officials and people was counted as nothing. 

According to this resolution, the king went to parliament, 
January 15 ; not with the beauty he had had on the former 
occasion, but with the same ceremonies. The chancellor 
made a long harangue; he represented the necessities of 
the State, the need the king had that his people should give 
him means to meet the costs of the war, in order that by 
war we might obtain a good peace. He spoke strongly on 
the power of kings, tried to establish as a fundamental law 
the obedience of subjects to their princes, and showed 
plainly the necessity of union between the head and the 


members, saying that without it no kingdom could enjoy 
true happiness. 

The chief president, though an able man and usually very 
eloquent, wishing to please the Court, delivered a speech 
which seemed feeble to his colleagues and was not praised 
even in the cabinet. That of the attorney-general, Talon, 
was strong and vigorous. He represented the misery of the 
people, and implored the queen to remember it in her oratory ; 
telling her that she ought to consider that she ruled a free 
people and not slaves; but, as things were, these very 
people found themselves so oppressed by subsidies and taxes 
that they might indeed say nothing was their own but their 
souls for those could not be sold at auction; and the 
laurels and victories won from the enemy with which the 
necessities of the people were being met, were not meat to 
feed them nor clothes to cover them. He said, moreover, 
certain things which showed the universal dissatisfaction of 
all Frenchmen at the delay of peace. His boldness was not 
approved by the minister. 

That evening the cardinal made war on the queen about 
her being sent to her oratory by Talon. In this he was 
seconded by her familiar servants, who thought she already 
remained there too long, and, in the interest of their own 
pleasure, continually reproached her for it. Thus the most 
serious lessons given to kings make no good impression on 
their minds ; for a turn to ridicule is usually given them, 
which drives away the virtuous thoughts to which they 
might otherwise have given birth. Princes seldom meet 
with persons who speak to them strongly ; and those who do 
so are the ones most frequently treated as ridiculous by the 
courtiers. This is why, their reason being weakened by the 
care taken to disguise from them the truth, sovereigns do not 
apply themselves to distinguish the true from the false ; and, 


letting their mind go to laziness and lightly passing over 
good and over evil, they are nearly always carried whitherso- 
ever their ministers are pleased to lead them. 

The queen, by nature equitable, pious, and well-intentioned, 
often fell for these very reasons into this misfortune ; and, 
not seeking to know fundamentally and studiously the cause 
of the evils that she saw before her eyes, it was impossible 
for her to remedy them ; consequently they became excessive 
and brought her in the end to the condition of fearing all 
things. To maintain the royal power, of which she had a 
lofty idea, it is much to be wished, for the sake of her own 
happiness, that she had herself shown clearly that she did 
not choose to have the king's subjects oppressed, nor yet to 
allow them to be disobedient to her. In those two points 
lies the justice of kings towards their subjects, and that of 
subjects towards their sovereign. 

The queen, as I have said already, had a soul sufficiently 
enriched by the gifts of God to govern well ; her ministers 
said that her opinions on affairs of .consequence, and her 
first sentiments, were always those of reason and justice; 
whereas those of her prime minister showed nothing that 
seemed to proceed from a lofty soul. On this very day cer- 
tain counsellors of the parliament, who came to see me, 
admitted that they had been much touched by the presence 
of the queen. They agreed with me that she had the gift of 
pleasing, and they said that France would have been happy 
indeed had she chosen to govern it, or, at any rate, if she had 
not abandoned it too much to her minister. 

The decrees were fairly moderate ; the visit to parliament 
was made more to maintain the royal authority than to in- 
crease its demands. The edict for creating the twelve new 
masters of petitions was the principal object, because it was 
felt that the revolt of the present officers must not be allowed. 

VOL. I. 15 


But as this affair, in the order of destiny, was fated to be the 
cause and the beginning of many great events, this little 
remedy, far from curing the evil, greatly embittered it and had 
results which made us see that God, when it pleases Him, can 
give to the ant the strength of the elephant. 

The people thought they had reason to cry out against 
those who were trying to rob them, and they declared that 
the more taxes were levied, the more the king's coffers were 
locked. It was heard on all sides that the salaries of the 
crown officers and those of the leaders at Court were cut down, 
that the lesser men were not paid at all, that favours had 
ceased, and that the queen had lost the beautiful quality of 
liberality which she held as her illustrious birthright ; and 
this, though the revenues of France were still paying much. 

The Court was indeed beginning to appear in a condition 
of mortifying want. The minister tried to convince every- 
one by his speeches (and I think he spoke the truth) that 
the Due d'0rle"ans and the Prince de Conde" were squandering 
the king's money, and therefore it was out of his power to do 
favours. Tubeuf, at that time still in the public service, 
told me that the Treasury account for the last year had 
amounted to one hundred and forty-two millions, The car- 
dinal was accused of having usurped a large portion of that 
sum for himself ; but his modesty was still restrained within 
narrower limits. The two princes, by taking much money, 
prevented him from using it as he pleased ; he was at that 
time only the corsair, the princes were the great robbers who 
resembled Alexander. 

The outcry against the minister made the war its pretext. 
This sufficed to make him hated by the people, always easy 
to excite by plausible reasons of the public good, and ever 
charmed by the good words " peace " and " rest." I remember 
that one of my friends, arriving from Rome about this time, 


told me that, having been ordered to say to the pope how 
much peace was desired, and that, in order to obtain it, all 
our hopes of fortunate successes in the field would be sacri- 
ficed to the public good, his Holiness replied in sarcastic 
tones that he did not meddle in the affair of the peace, but 
he saw plainly that in order to obtain it voi altri Francesi 
non volete donare che quel cTie non avete ; " to get peace, you 
Frenchmen will only give that which you have not." 

The next day the queen summoned before her the masters 
of petitions. She received them in her great cabinet, accom- 
panied by the Due d'0rle*ans, the Prince de Conde", her min- 
ister, the king's council, and the whole Court. The chancellor 
gave them a severe reprimand, which the queen interrupted, 
of her own monition, to tell them they were strange people to 
wish to limit the king's authority ; and that she would show 
them he had power to create what new offices he chose. The 
chancellor, continuing his harangue, dismissed them from 
their offices and ordered them to give to the queen the paper 
which it was said they had signed among themselves ; or else 
to sign another paper stating that they had never written it. 

When they heard this speech and this command, some of 
them, without considering the respect they owed to the 
queen, shook their heads boldly, and all gave signs that 
they were not inclined to obey. After making a profound 
bow, they went away, ill-pleased, and with the firm inten- 
tion of defending themselves. They felt there were clouds 
in the sky, that the weather was bad for the Court, and that 
they themselves had a chance to resist; consequently this 
severity had no good result. 

The next day, January 20, they presented themselves be- 
fore parliament in a body in order to oppose the enregister- 
ing of the decree against them. Presenting themselves as 
parties in a case, they stood before the bar ; and although the 


decree had been issued in the king's presence, the chief 
president did not abstain from receiving them in opposition 
to it. The Court was ill-pleased, and the minister made 
loud complaints ; but the chief president was clever enough 
not to be shaken and to succeed in convincing the cardinal 
that it was all in order. He told him that the ordinances 
required him to receive them ; that parliament had power to 
assemble and deliberate over matters that had even been 
decreed in presence of the king ; and also that they possessed 
the right to remonstrate with him. This answer obliged the 
queen to summon the parliament in a body to tell them that 
at first she had thought their conduct blamable in listening 
as they had to the opposition of the masters of petitions ; but 
that having subsequently learned they were entitled by their 
ordinances to do so, she excused them, and consented that 
they should have assembled, as they had done, to confer, and 
even to go so far as to remonstrate ; but she ordered them 
not to go further, and not to assemble again. 

The parliament replied with fine protestations of fidelity ; 
and then, without the slightest regard to the queen's com- 
mand, they assembled as many times as they thought 
necessary to satisfy their fancy. We shall see other such 
commands, often reiterated and often as little respected. 

In the beginning of these disturbances in Paris the Due 
d'Orle'ans kept himself one with the queen's interests and 
supported her authority in every way that he could. He 
was not, perhaps, sorry at some disturbance, for that, of 
course, rendered him more necessary to her ; but he laid no 
schemes to increase it, and his intentions seemed upright 
and altogether in the line of equity and justice. The Abb 
de La Riviere, through his temperament, his interests, and 
his common-sense, turned his master ever towards peace; 
nattering himself with the hope of becoming some day a 


cardinal, he rendered to the queen and her minister such 
services as he thought most useful and agreeable to them. 
The mischief-makers and the malcontents were in despair 
because, desiring disturbances and change, they saw it was 
impossible to get much of them so long as the Due d'Orle'ans, 
uncle of the king, continued attached to the interests of the 
queen. What might really be called kindness in the char- 
acter of the duke was attributed by them to weakness ; that 
which to men of honour seemed a virtue, they despised, 
saying that if the master lacked courage, his favourite de 
La Kiviere was the cause of it; and that out of base 
self-interest he prevented him from acquiring glory and 

The Prince de Conde", on his side, acted in the same man- 
ner ; his advantage being wholly in living at Court in the 
good graces of the queen. The Due d'Orle'ans did not over- 
shadow him enough to obscure his own grandeur ; the repu- 
tation of the duke was not dazzling like his own ; and the 
rank of lieutenant-general of the kingdom and of the armies 
of the king, and that of being son and uncle of kings, could 
not take from the prince the glory of having won two great 
battles. For these reasons he reigned in the cabinet almost 
as sovereignly as if he had been the sole prince of the blood ; 
and, the Due d'Orle'ans having no son, all the grandeur of 
the second branch of the family came to the prince, and 
made his court much larger than that of the duke, to whom, 
however, he paid great respect and homage in order to 
keep him satisfied with appearances, while he enjoyed in 
reality the solid advantages of power, and gave to his 
creatures and his friends all that he pleased. 

The Shrovetide of this year went by without any unusual 
fetes. There was a ballet at which the Due de Joyeuse, 
Louis de Lorraine, danced (January 23), also the Dues de 


Candale, de Damoille, de Eoannet, and several others, which 
was fine. The Court gaieties were moderate, and suited to 
the gravity and seriousness of the queen ; she did not like 
them any more than she ought. In the evening, which is 
the hour for amusement, the crowd left her and she remained 
in her own apartments solitary, tranquil, and content. The 
courtiers all went to the cardinal; the queen wished it; 
desiring nothing in the world more than to make over to 
him her power, being persuaded that that of the minister 
strengthened her own. Moreover, I can say with truth that 
her natural indifference put her above the sentiments which 
self-love and ambition usually produce in the human heart. 
No doubt she despised too much the one advantage of kings 
that of commanding, and of being able to contribute by 
their authority and their benefits to the happiness of man- 
kind, thus sharing in a way the supreme power of God him- 
self. But this defect in her proceeded in part from a fine 
cause which deserves more praise than blame. The effect, 
nevertheless, was so contrary to her interests that she would 
have done well to correct it; and for that very reason I 
scarcely dare to call attention to its merits. 

I have remarked that the murmuring against the cardinal 
was great for not having brought about a peace. Every one, 
in these first disagreements, fearing to bring on civil war, 
blamed him for this one thing, and for having said, some- 
times very publicly, that peace had been in his own hands. 
The populace cried out against him, and minds that were 
ready for revolt could not forgive him that fault. 

The Dutch had requested the Due de Longueville, when 
he was on the point of returning to France, to delay his 
departure from Munster for a short time ; which gave rise 
to the hope that through their intervention Spam would 
make a treaty with us. But the King of Spam, who was 


beginning to see a change in the luck of France through 
the state in which it now was, desiring that we should grant 
all his demands, said openly that without great advantages 
he would refuse a peace; and his proposals were so hard 
that it was impossible to think of any agreement. 

Therefore the Dutch, who wished to quit us, having signed 
their treaty, the Due de Longueville found himself wholly 
useless at Minister for the public good. He thought also of 
his private interests, and asked permission to return to 
France; which was granted readily, and he appeared at 
Court with the sole advantage of having seen the Dutch 
make peace with Spain, which was likely to be damaging 
to us. The minister made the queen receive him with 
evident marks of good-will. I remember that on the eve- 
ning of the day he arrived, as she was undressing she said 
to us much good of this prince, treating him almost as a 
father to the country, although he had already been twice 
opposed to the king. He was given a place in the Council ; 
which at that time was a favour not as easy to obtain as it 
has been since. This prerogative had really been granted 
to him before he went to Miinster, up to which time none 
but princes of the blood had enjoyed the privilege ; but the 
malicious said that such caresses were given only to oblige 
him to keep the secret of the rupture of the peace, and 
the difficulties the minister had produced to prevent its 

The parliament inconvenienced the Court by its delays. 
Some among its members began to talk loudly ; and the 
queen, who did not like to meet an obstacle to her power 
when the authority of the king was concerned, was annoyed 
by the slowness of its proceedings. She sent to ask them 
whether they assumed to have the right to limit the king's 
will. They took opinions on this point, and some of them 


advised consulting their registers in order to make the queen 
an answer authorized by examples from past centuries; 
which would, no doubt, have mightily displeased the min- 
ister. But the majority being of a contrary opinion, they 
sent their chief president as deputy to the queen to assure 
her of their obedience and fidelity, and to let her know that 
what they had done to modify the decrees the king had 
brought to parliament, and what they were doing in favour 
of the masters of petitions were only in accordance with the 
king's good pleasure, and without the least intention of 
failing in the respect they owed to him as good and faithful 

These protestations were not followed up; parliament, 
continuing its assemblies, did not cease to delay the register- 
ing of decrees that were necessary for the service of the 
king and the advantage of the minister. Their conduct 
obliged the queen to summon parliament to let it know her 
resolves. She wished to make it understand that it had no 
right, after making its remonstrances to the king and to 
herself, to oppose the registration of the decrees. She also 
ordered the members to bring the sheet in which their deci- 
sion had been registered, which contained the statement that 
their own modifications would be carried out; her design 
being to make them tear it up in her presence. But they, 
having assembled, sent a message to the queen, entreating 
her to think it right that they should not go to her, assuring 
her that they were resolved to pay her all the respect that 
was her due. 

The queen, having risen earlier than usual to receive 
them, held a council to decide how to answer this. It was 
resolved that they should be summoned a second time and 
received by the queen after her dinner. The procureur- 
general, who went to them with these orders, did not find 


them in session ; weary of waiting they had departed ; which 
was thought disrespectful by those who knew the respect 
due by subjects to their sovereign. They were then sum- 
moned for the morrow; and in order that this occasion 
might be the more solemn, the dukes and peers of France 
were assembled to receive them, and all the great seigneurs 
then at Court were invited. As it was known that the queen 
intended to give them a severe and public reprimand, 
they came with humility to make excuses to her by the 
mouth of the chief president, whose harangue was full of 
submission, respect, and promises to obey her ; so that instead 
of punishment they received from the queen a favourable 
greeting, joined to a command that they should work steadily 
at the king's business and make no more delays. She told 
them that she gave them only eight days to conclude it. 

The queen took that week to make a little journey 
(March 25) to Notre-Dame de Chartres, where, during the 
illness of the king, she had made a vow to go. On leaving 
Paris, she reiterated to the president the command she had 
given to his assembled company, and assured him that she 
should be but five days on her journey. She spent the day 
at Notre-Dame de Chartres with the king, whom she took 
there, also Monsieur, who was removed from the hands of 
women on this occasion. They gave him as governor the 
Mare*chal Du Plessis-Praslin (Ce'sar de Choiseul), a great 
and successful captain, who had acquired much reputation 
for the battles he had won and the cities he had taken. 
He commanded the army of the king in Italy, where 
Cardinal Mazarin had known his merits. 

During this little absence the masters of petitions, who 
had been suppressed, came in a body to see the cardinal, to 
entreat him to protect them with the queen and to get 
them replaced in their offices. They made him excuses 


for their revolt and asked for pardon and favour both. He 
received them with a grave and stern face, but answered 
gently that if they were willing to humiliate themselves 
and obey the queen's will, he would do them good service 
with her. 

This action was happiness to the minister. He despatched 
a courier to the queen with the news, and fully believed 
that this visit meant that the masters of petitions had 
resolved to submit to the creation of twelve more offices, 
which at first they resisted. But they who had made this 
advance only to succeed in their ends and make the car- 
dinal plume himself on the glory of doing them a service, 
were not satisfied with his reply and continued in their 
former determination. So that it was finally decided in 
council to order the counsellors of State to report all cases 
of private persons, in order to let the masters of petitions 
know that the king could dispense with the services of their 
body. By this punishment many families in Paris were 
thrown into great distress and fear lest they should lose 
their offices. As persons of the long robe are for the most 
part bound together by ties of parentage, this affair seemed 
to them of great consequence, for it concerned all the sover- 
eign courts. 1 They therefore wished to make known that 
they would not permit that favourites and ministers should 
annihilate, in the name of the king, such important officers ; 
and one and all they united to sustain the masters of peti- 
tions, intending in that way to save themselves from a 
like peril. 

1 Cours souveraines, or compagnies souveraines supreme courts : these 
were, as given here, the court of parliament, the cour des comptes, the cour 
des aides, and the grand council ; when these separate courts met for con- 
sultation it was by delegates from each, who held their sessions in the 
chamber of Saint-Louis, at the Palais de Justice ; hence this united court 
\s called the Chamber of Saint-Louis. TR. 


The Prince de Cond began his campaign this year by a 
stay of eight days at Chantilly, where he went, with all his 
court, to spend Holy Week ; and the Due d'Orle'ans was 
destined to be the queen's supporter in the events which it 
was foreseen must arise on the parliamentary side. At this 
time the two princes seemed to have good intentions to 
serve the king well, whether in peace or war. The queen 
spent the holy days as usual, and, to employ them worthily, 
she ordered public prayers for peace ; which were not effica- 
cious, because men are not worthy of the gift that God by 
His Gospel gave at this time (Easter) to His apostles, say- 
ing, when He appeared to them, " Peace be unto you ! " 

Towards the end of April a gentleman belonging to the 
household of Mademoiselle, named Saujeon, was arrested. 
His sister was maid-of-honour to Madame, and the Due 
d'Orle'ans did not hate her. But the inclination he had 
for the sister did not prevent the disgrace of the brother, 
because the reasons for it were strong, and the matter 
itself seemed delicate. 

At first, a great secret was made of the affair ; the queen 
alone, her minister, the Due d'Orle'ans, and his favourite 
knew it ; and the Court people employed some days in find- 
ing out the truth, because adventures which are thought to 
proceed from the cabinet cause more curiosity than matters 
of any other nature. The prisoner was secretly interrogated 
during a little journey which the Due d'Orle'ans made to 
Limours; and though the above-named four personages 
kept silence religiously, Comminges, a relative of Saujeon, 
who was a friend of mine, told me the story ; but in relating 
to me the matter of Saujeon's interrogation, he begged me 
to keep it secret for a certain time. 

Every one began to suspect the truth, but no one knew it 
wholly. We saw its outburst one Thursday evening, after 


the council, which was held that day in the little gallery 
of the queen's apartment. The Due d'Orle'ans sent for 
Mademoiselle to come to that place, where they remained 
alone, the queen, Monsieur, Cardinal Mazarin, and the Abbe* 
de la Eiviere. As she entered, the favourite of her father, 
whom she hated, told her in a low voice that she was about 
to receive a reprimand from Monsieur her father, and that 
the only thing to do was to humble herself to him and to 
the queen. 

The gist of this affair was that Saujeon, perhaps with 
Mademoiselle's consent, wished to marry her to the arch- 
duke. 1 His crime was to have had an understanding with 
a burgher at Furnes, and this burgher had another with a 
person of quality who was at the court of the archduke. 
This person, instead of working for the success of the affair 
(whether by consent of his master or as a spy paid by 
France to betray him), warned the cardinal of the negotia- 
tion; and the minister, not being pleased with Mademoi- 
selle, blackened her to the queen and spoke of this collusion 
as semi-criminal and deserving of her anger. The queen, 
who really thought Mademoiselle guilty, spoke of it to 
Monsieur with such resentment that, in spite of his being 
her father, he dared not excuse her. 

The young princess, who had felt the coming storm, con- 
sidered that she had better hide her uneasiness and appear 
to fear nothing ; so that on the previous day (last of April) 
entering the chamber of Madame her step-mother, at the 
Luxembourg, she remarked, laughing, that it was said that 
Saujeon was a prisoner for her sake because he wanted to 
marry her to the archduke ; as for her, she thought it amus- 

1 Mademoiselle relates this affair at great length in her Memoirs. She 
treats Saujeon as a visionary, and denies all direct participation in the 
project of a marriage with the archduke. FK. ED. 


ing, but as she knew nothing about the matter she could 
take no part in it except to pity him. However, here she 
was, called before the council, and much disturbed by the 
advice the Abbe* de La Eiviere had whispered in her ear. 
She found the queen irritated; accusing her of having pri- 
vate understandings with the enemies of the State, of wishing 
to marry without her consent or that of her father, and of 
wanting in respect towards both of them; then, having 
rigorously treated her, she turned her over to the Due 
d'Orle'ans, who confirmed the anger of the queen and him- 
self, and did not refrain from saying everything that could 
serve as a punishment for her fault. 

Mademoiselle, finding herself thus openly attacked, gath- 
ered strength from her weakness and sustained herself bravely 
against these two persons, whom, for so many reasons, she 
had to fear. She maintained boldly that she had not done 
wrong and had known nothing of the negotiation. On the 
contrary, she reproached Monsieur because he might, if he 
had chosen, have married her to the emperor ; and she made 
it plain to him that it was shameful not to protect her now 
when her fame was attacked. 

The queen, who listened to these words with astonishment, 
did me the honour to say to me that evening that if she had 
had a daughter who treated her as Mademoiselle had treated 
her father she would have banished her from Court forever 
and shut her up in a convent. We heard the noise of the 
accusations and the defence; and though none but those 
three persons spoke (the minister not wishing to show that 
he had any share in the reprimand), the uproar was so great 
that we who were in the adjoining cabinet were full of the 
desire to know the details and the upshot of the quarrel. 

Mademoiselle came from the gallery with a face more 
haughty than ashamed, and her eyes were full of anger 


rather than repentance. In passing, she stopped before the 
Abbe* de la Kiviere and then went away to her own apart- 
ments, keenly hurt to see herself abandoned by him from 
whom she had the right to hope for support and consolation. 
The next day the Abbe* de la Kiviere went to see her on 
behalf of his master, to forbid her to see any one whomsoever 
until she had confessed all she knew of the affair. The 
abbe*, who perhaps would not have been sorry to please the 
minister by confounding this criminal, who he knew hated 
him, did all he could to make her admit the truth of the 
intrigue ; but she continued firm and steadfast hi denying it. 

She was greatly distressed by many painful things, and 
this distress gave her a fever; she even fainted from grief 
when they took away from her one of her women whom they 
suspected of having aided her to have long conversations 
with Saujeon. This gentleman had wished to serve a prin- 
cess who deserved help ; but he belonged in duty to the king, 
and was therefore blamable. His fault, nevertheless, was 
more imprudent than criminal, for the motive was perfectly 
innocent. Apparently, Mademoiselle wished to marry, and 
in this purpose she had doubtless no intention of failing in 
the respect she owed to the queen and Monsieur; but her 
conduct was blamable when considered by the axioms of the 
State, which forbid all private intercourse with enemies and 

Personally, I had at that time no reason to be pleased 
with the princess except for the share she gave me of her 
civility to everybody ; and I cannot be suspected of ardour 
in all that I may say of her; but as I make profession of 
perfect sincerity I am obliged to render her this testimony. 
I even had the equity, though she never knew it, to maintain 
to the queen on the day of this affair, that Mademoiselle 
was right not to acknowledge she was looking for a husband 


through secret intrigues ; and I told the queen that I thought 

whether this were true or not that Monsieur did wrong 
to abandon her and to try to make her publicly confess a 
thing which was more shameful to acknowledge than to do 

for a girl is not to blame for thinking of her establish- 
ment, but it is not proper that this should be known ; nor 
should she appear to be working for that purpose. " Fathers, 
Madame," I said to her, " are accustomed, when proposals of 
marriage are made, to keep to certain conventions in order 
to protect the fame of their daughters, which always seem 
smirched when they seek that which it is perfectly allowable 
to wish for." 

The queen, who always did me the honour to receive 
kindly whatever came from a heart that she knew to be 
faithful to her, was displeased by the sentiments which I 
had on this affair, because she herself totally disapproved 
of it; and that was why in her displeasure she told 
the Due d'Orle'ans what I had said, and he, without con- 
sidering the motive which made me speak, complained to 
me and said he was astonished that I blamed his course, 
because he had always thought me more his friend than that 
of his daughter. Instead of justifying myself to him, I told 
my sentiments to his favourite, who was sometimes reason- 
able enough to receive them well. I advised him to try and 
heal the quarrel, and said that I could understand that Mon- 
sieur should complain of a princess who wished to marry 
without the concurrence of a father like himself, and that 
the queen had also reason to be angry with her. But I 
insisted to him that Monsieur ought not to force her to con- 
fess a thing of that nature, and that he himself ought not, out 
of compliance, to embitter Monsieur against her. And I 
said that if he did not endeavour to end the quarrel he would 
be blamed by everybody for not making his master recognize 


the true interests of Mademoiselle's reputation, which were 
really his own, inasmuch as she was his daughter. I con- 
cluded the conversation by telling him, in presence of Made- 
moiselle de Beaumont, the princess's woman, that while it 
was true she was wrong and had perhaps risked too much, 
her fault was legitimate, and that the old age of the arch- 
duke, his big ears, and his stern piety ought to justify her 
before all the world. 

This little harangue had its effect. Shortly after, Monsieur 
learned the truth. Mademoiselle got some one to speak to 
the cardinal and beg him to change the queen's mind as to 
the accusation she made against her. Several persons spoke 
to the Abbe" de La Riviere on her behalf, and the minister, 
who was very glad to lay claim to some merit with her, 
expressed a desire to serve her. Monsieur's favourite fol- 
lowed this example; and, comprehending that it was right 
that his master should show pity, he forgot his own little 
resentments in order to serve her; so that finally, on the 
eleventh day of her captivity, after great conferences which 
it was necessary to have with the queen, the Abbe" de la 
Eiviere went to take to Mademoiselle a few words of kind- 
ness from Monsieur, accompanied by strong lessons and re- 
spectful reprimands about her conduct. 

The princess had given various subjects of annoyance to 
Monsieur ; and the Comtesse de Fiesque, her governess, made 
many complaints against her, accusing her of imprudence in 
her actions, and particularly in not endeavouring carefully to 
obtain the good graces of the minister. She blamed her for 
being too much carried away by her friends and against her 
enemies; and by wise and politic speeches she often drew 
upon the princess little paternal punishments, gentle or severe 
according to the mood in which the prince happened to be. 
But, after all, he tenderly loved Mademoiselle, and always 


lived on good terms with her ; he treated her kindly, and 
I have several times heard him say that his daughter fed 
him ; that he was a beggar, while she was rich, and without 
her he should sometimes have wanted bread. 

He told the truth, for Mademoiselle having the property 
of her mother, who was heiress of the house of Montpensier 
and that of Joyeuse, he had always enjoyed the use of it ; 
not giving her more than was needed to maintain her es- 
tablishment. This inheritance he paid to her later, in conse- 
quence of the suits he had with her, when, growing older, 
she avenged herself upon him, and insisted on having her 
property, with signs of a soul that was rather too hard 
for love. 

The same day, after this mollifying, Mademoiselle went to 
see the queen, who received her coldly. She told her that 
she ought not to plume herself on having stood out against 
her father and her sovereign, not confessing the faults she 
had committed ; that those who counselled her gave her, no 
doubt, high praise, but that she ought not to allow herself to 
be deceived by them, for they did not advise her well ; and 
that she ought rather to believe that her fault was great, 
because she saw it was disapproved by so kind a father 
as hers and by herself, who had always treated her as 
her own daughter. 

Some days later peace was entirely restored by a visit she 
received permission to pay to Monsieur, who, after a private 
conversation, forgave her all her little faults. After that 
the Court busied itself about other matters, this one being 
already too old to talk about. Saujeon was sent a pris- 
oner to Pierre-Encise, whence he issued soon after, in May. 
About this time the little Monsieur, brother of the king, was 
baptized, and named Philippe, by the Queen of England and 
by Monsieur, his uncle and that of the king. 

VOL. I. 16 



AN event which caused the affair of Mademoiselle to be 
the more quickly forgotten was the arrival of a courier sent 
by the Prince de Cond to the queen, to let her know he was 
beginning to march upon the enemy with a very fine army. 
This news made the minister resolve to take the Court to 
the frontier, that it might be well placed to assist at the 
grandeur of France through the downfall of its enemies ; 
which could readily be hoped with good troops and a gen- 
eral like the Prince de Conde*. But the queen was detained 
in Paris by a new embarrassment in the king's affairs, which 
proved in the end to be of no small consequence to the 

The paulette was again given to all the supreme compan- 
ies on condition that their salaries for four years be with- 
held. 1 But to content parliament separately, as the most 
important body in the kingdom, and therefore the most 
to be feared, it was given to that body without the four 
years' forfeiture. The Chambre des Comptes, the Cour des 
Aides, the grand council, and all the officers of France, who 
found themselves hampered by this treatment, complained to 
parliament, and asked its assistance to maintain their right 
against the oppression which, they said, had been put upon 

1 Fiscal duty invented by Charles Paulet, secretary of the king's cham- 
ber. By paying this tax at the beginning of each year the titulary to an 
office (whether judicial or financial) secured its inheritance to his heirs. 
If it were not paid, the office, in case of death, reverted to the king. 
FR. ED. 


them. They pointed out to parliament that it ought to 
fear being some day involved in this ordinance; that their 
humiliation ought to make it apprehend that its own power 
would be diminished ; and that if the courts did not sustain 
one another they were all equally threatened with total ruin ; 
because favourites, having no more formidable obstacle than 
the power of parliament, if parliament stood alone by itself, 
nothing would be easier than to diminish what power re- 
mained to it, and put it on a par with the other assemblies 
of the kingdom. 

Parliament was moved by these reasons, by a fear of like 
treatment, and also by the desire, which at that time ruled 
the chief minds in that great assembly, to rise higher. It 
assembled, and it murmured; nearly all its members de- 
clared that if they abandoned their brethren the latter would 
have the right to complain of them; and if they were ill- 
treated it was to be expected that all would have their share 
of woes. In short, on May 13, the Chambers having assent 
bled, they gave a decision whereby a union with the othei 
courts [compagnies] was agreed to, in which it was said 
that " they forbade the reception of any new officers at a 
time when, the paulette not being granted to all, the offices 
would revert to the king, and the widows and heirs be left 

On this decision the queen ordered the chancellor to 
summon parliament and declare to it, from her, that, having 
gratified that body especially, her Majesty had believed it 
would be grateful to her ; but, recognizing from its pro- 
ceedings that it took her favour in another way, she no 
longer promised to exempt it from the payment of the four 
years' salaries which she had thought proper to retain from 
the officers of the other companies ; and she would now 
leave matters as they had been ; but she begged them to 


consider the necessities of the king's affairs, and to consult 
as to other means of obtaining money. 

This answer was too gentle for an offended master; it 
appeared to come from the spirit of the minister, always 
ready to come down when resisted, and to force too much 
when he thought he could do so. But it had a double 
meaning; the cardinal's thought was to leave the parlia- 
ment in the condition hi which it was, and revenge himself 
by letting its members languish hi uncertainty lest each in 
dying should lose his office. 

The queen sent to the registrar's office (May 18) an order 
forbidding the reception of any money from parliament, 
revoking the gift she had made it of the paulette, and 
replacing it on the same footing as the other companies. 
This course was approved by able men, and would perhaps 
have succeeded had the minister been able to sustain it. 
But as parliament now felt itself engaged in a great enter- 
prise it believed that it ought to push its resistance farther, 
and, in order to come safely out of the affair, to give birth 
to an opposition to Cardinal Mazarin which would embarrass 
him. It sought its means carefully; and the bad disposi- 
tion of the minds at Court, the misery of all France, the 
public hatred which was beginning to openly declare itself 
against the minister, gave it such support that without some 
special protection of God over the kingdom, it is to be 
believed that parliament might then have overthrown the 

The queen, who had not tried to gratify parliament will- 
ingly, said, in speaking of this affair, that she believed it 
would repent of what it had done ; and that she was not 
sorry to be compelled to revoke the favour she had shown 
it against her will, treating it more kindly than it deserved. 
As the blood of Charles V. made her by nature haughty, she 


had never supposed that any creature, any servant, could or 
would dare to defend himself against the will of the king ; 
so that in all these affairs with parliament, whose rules and 
quibblings she did not understand, she always wanted to 
overthrow it, and believed that whatever was ordered in her 
council was to be executed by that assembly. 

About this time (May, 1648) the Duke of York, twelve or 
thirteen years old, escaped from England under orders sent 
to him by the queen, his mother, and went to Holland. He 
has since related to me himself how he had kept this plan 
in his heart for a whole year, without being able to execute 
it. He made use at last of one of the servants whom the 
queen his mother sent to him. 

His governor had already had the same design, and 
thought of executing it ; but he had been made answerable 
for him to the English parliament, which, suspecting some 
such purpose, threatened him that if he ever thought of it 
the prince would be sent to the Tower of London. The 
prince related to me what he had suffered, without allow- 
ing any thought of escape to show itself. At last, one day 
when he saw his guards amusing themselves by playing 
games, he slipped out by a little back door into the park, 
where the servant who helped him was waiting with 
women's clothes. He put them on and went to a house in 
London, where he stayed some days dressed as a girl. Then 
he embarked with his equerry in a vessel which sailed for 
Holland ; and as he was very handsome the sailors suspected 
that he was not too virtuous. 

When his flight was discovered in London he was pursued 
by an English vessel, and came near being captured in sight 
of Flushing. The port where he wished to land was dan- 
gerous on account of the wind which was then blowing ; so 
that the prince, divining th^t the vessel that followed them 


was after him, quitted his borrowed sex to threaten the 
pilot and force him to put him ashore at the peril of his 
life. When the master of the vessel, who did not want to 
go to land, resisted, he took the sword of the man who was 
near him and made as though he would run him through 
the body, in order to make him put him ashore where he 
wished to go. The master obeyed under force ; and he thus 
escaped the persecutions which the barbarous subjects of his 
father intended for him. 

He came to France, where the king and queen received 
him kindly and with the affection due to the grandson of 
Henri IV. and the son of a great and unfortunate king. He 
left in England the Duke of Gloucester, his younger brother, 
with his governor the Duke of Northumberland; also a 
princess, his sister, about eleven or twelve years old. These 
two children alone received the last blessing of the king 
their father when, a few months later, he was put to death. 
Then the parliament sent the little prince, who remained in 
their hands, and whom they never treated as a prince while 
in their power, to the queen, his mother. The daughter died ; 
she had seemed to feel deeply the misfortunes of the king 
her father. 

On the 25th of May the queen, seeing that the parliament 
was determined to hold out against her will and to favour 
public rights, sent to order it to come to her. When it came 
the chancellor spoke to it for her, and he spoke strongly. 
After this discourse she gave the members a sharp reprimand 
herself, telling them that, as their company abused the 
favourable intentions she had had to benefit them, she would 
never in future do them favours; and she forbade them 
absolutely to assemble, or to communicate among themselves 
by deputies. The president wished to answer her ; but she, 
her face severe and threatening, forbade him to speak. Two 


days later all the other supreme courts were summoned, 
the Chambre des Comptes, the Cour des Aides, and the 
Grand Council. The same things were said to them, but 
with even more rigour, because they were less thought of 
than the parliament ; and as the minister judged it necessary 
to make the anger of the queen feared in some stronger way 
than by mere words, which do no harm, several of the Grand 
Council were dismissed and eight from the Cour des Aides, 
who were all exiled to different parts of the kingdom. Par- 
liament showed much resentment at this petty chastisement ; 
and the courts one and all resolved to assemble in spite of 
the queen's command. 

On the day of Pentecost, the first of the month of June, 
the Due de Beaufort, a prisoner for the last five years at 
Vincennes, escaped from his prison about midday. He 
found means to burst his chains through the cleverness of 
friends and some of his family, who on this occasion served 
him faithfully. He was guarded by an officer of the Gardes 
du corps, and by seven or eight of the Gardes who slept in 
his chamber and never left him. He was served by officers 
of the king; not one of his own servants was about him; 
and above all, Chavigny, who was not his friend, was 
governor of Vincennes. 

The officer who guarded him, named La Rame'e, had taken 
to Vincennes, at the request of one of his friends, a certain 
man who, under pretext of a duel that brought him under 
the law on account of the king's edict against duelling, de- 
sired this asylum by which to save himself. It is to be 
believed, however, that he was put there by the followers of 
the prince, and perhaps by consent of the officer ; but I am 
ignorant of these particulars, and am only convinced by 

This man, at first, to play the good valet and show that he 


was not useless, busied himself more than all the others in 
carefully guarding the prisoner; and it was told to the 
queen, in relating the story to her, that he even went so far 
as roughness. Whether it was that he went there to serve 
the Due de Beaufort, or allowed himself to be gained over by 
him, the duke used him to communicate his thoughts to his 
friends and obtain knowledge of the plans they had made 
for his release. 

When the time came for executing their scheme, they 
expressly chose the day of Pentecost because the solemnity 
of that festival occupied every one in divine service. At the 
hour when the guards dined, the duke asked La Bame'e to 
let him walk in a gallery where he had obtained permission 
to go and amuse himself at times. This gallery was lower 
than the place where he was lodged, but still very high up, 
on account of the depth of the moats which it overlooked on 
two sides. La Bame'e followed him on this walk and re- 
mained alone with him in the gallery. The man won over 
by the duke pretended to go and dine with the rest; but, 
counterfeiting illness, he took only a little wine and left the 
room locking the door upon them, also several other doors 
between the gallery and the room where they took their 

He then went to find the prisoner and the officer who 
guarded him, and entering the gallery he locked that door 
also and put the keys of all the doors in his pocket. At the 
next moment the Due de Beaufort, who was of commanding 
figure, and this man who was secretly his, flung themselves 
upon La Bame'e and prevented him from crying out. Then, 
not wishing to kill him, although it was dangerous not to do 
so unless he were really won over to their side, they gagged 
him, bound him hand and foot, and left him. After which 
they fastened a rope to the window and lowered themselves, 


one after the other, but the valet first, as he would certainly 
have been rigorously punished had he failed to escape. 
They let themselves slip into the moat, the depth of which 
was greater than the length of then* rope ; so that, dropping 
from the end of the rope the prince ran the risk of injuring 
himself, which really happened. The pain made him swoon, 
and he continued a long time in that state without recover- 
ing his senses. 

Coming to himself after a while, four or five of his friends, 
who were on the other side of the moat, and had seen him 
lying half dead with terrible anxiety, flung him another rope 
which he fastened round his body, and in this way they 
dragged him by strength of arms up to them ; the valet first, 
according to the promise the prince had made him, which 
was faithfully kept. When he reached the top, he was in a 
bad state, for besides the hurt he received in falling, the 
rope he had tied round his body had tightened upon his 
stomach under the joltings he had received in being drawn 
up. But having recovered some strength through the vigour 
of his courage and the fear of losing the fruit of his pains, he 
rose and went to join a party of fifty men who were awaiting 
him in a neighbouring wood. 

A gentleman of his own family who took part in the expe- 
dition, told me afterwards, that on seeing himself surrounded 
by this troop of men, the joy of finding he was at liberty and 
among his own people was so great that he was cured in a 
moment of all his pains, and springing on a horse that was 
held ready for him, he disappeared like lightning, enchanted 
to breathe the air without restraint and to be able to say, 
like King Francois I. when he set foot in France on return- 
ing from Spain, " Ha ! I am free ! " 

A woman who was gathering herbs in a garden at the edge 
of the moat, with a little boy, saw all that happened of this 


mystery. But the men who were in ambush had so threat- 
ened her to force her to be silent that, having little interest 
in preventing the prince from escaping, she and her son stood 
quietly looking on at all they did. As soon as he was gone 
the woman went and told her husband, who was gardener of 
the place, and they both went to notify the guards. But it 
was then too late; men could not change what God had 
ordered ; and the stars, which sometimes seem to tell the 
decrees of that Sovereign, had already revealed to many per- 
sons, through an astrologer named Goisel, that the Due de 
Beaufort was to leave his prison on that very day. 

The news at first surprised the whole Court, particularly 
those who were not indifferent to it. The minister was no 
doubt disturbed; but, as usual, he did not show it. The 
queen, who formerly regarded the prince as a friend, and who 
now hated him more for reasons of State than from inclina- 
tion, consoled herself readily for the little annoyance this 
escape had given her ; and doubtless a great many persons 
rejoiced at it. For, besides the fact that the prince was 
loved and had a great cabal taking part in his interests, the 
enemies of the cardinal hoped that, being at liberty, the duke 
would make a party in France and bring about a change in 
the government. No one doubted that he had great desires 
for revenge upon his enemy, and that the bad disposition of 
many minds would easily give him means to obtain it. 

The queen and the cardinal talked kindly about the 
escape, and laughed over it, saying that M. de Beaufort had 
done well Chavigny alone was blamed, for not having 
taken care enough to guard the prisoner; and the queen 
blamed him loudly for leaving the exterior of the prison 
without sentinels who would have seen the plot. But 
Chavigny, though driven from the council by the Due de 
Beaufort and receiving him at Vincennes with joy, not being 


now so well treated by the cardinal as he had a right to ex- 
pect after the rout of " the Importants," no longer cared to 
guard this enemy, whose ruin had done him no good. When 
the prisoner escaped Chavigny had gone to spend the festival 
at the Chartreuse, where he often went for consolation in 
default of human favour ; and in justifying himself to the 
queen and cardinal he alleged no other reasons except that 
he considered he ought to leave that duty to the king's offi- 
cers who were answerable for it, and not he, to whom no 
special order for watchfulness was given. 

The Due de Beaufort had lived religiously in prison ; for 
it is customary with men to seek God when in trouble and 
forget him in prosperity. This very thing happened to the 
prince, who, penitent enough in the forest of Vincennes, 
thought only of revenge and diversion as soon as he was out 
of it. 

Before this good luck happened to the Due de Beaufort 
the cardinal was warned that a plot was preparing to set him 
at liberty. He wrote to La Kame'e about it ; ordering him to 
take especial care to prevent such a thing from happening. 
The officer answered that unless the prince became a little 
bird capable of flying out of the window, it was impossible 
that he could get away ; and that very thing having hap- 
pened, the cardinal showed the letter to the Mare'chal 
d'Estre"es, uncle of the Due de Beaufort, who was astonished 
to see that an all-powerful minister, so well warned, was 
unable to avert what destiny decreed for the prisoner, 
namely, to leave his prison for the accomplishment of great 
events about to happen in which he was to have so large a 

The cardinal telt some uneasiness as to the place of the 
Due de Beaufort's retreat. He was afraid he might go to 
Brittany, where his principal estates lay, and would there 


raise a faction and disturbances. 1 But one of my friends, 
to whom the cardinal communicated his thoughts on the 
subject, reassured him completely, and told him that the 
prince, having neither fortresses nor money, could do nothing 
against the State or against him against the State on 
account of his powerlessness ; against him, because the 
cardinal could pay those who guarded him higher than the 
duke could pay those he might employ against him. 

The queen, doing me the honour to speak to me of all 
this, said that the Due de Beaufort was not in a condition 
to raise a party in France ; and, in regard to the cardinal's 
person, she added that the prince had taken the sacraments 
too many times in his prison to still retain in his soul the 
intention to murder. And on my saying that perhaps he 
would seek to be reconciled with her minister and would 
ask him to restore him to her good graces, she answered that 
the cardinal would be foolish to do that and that she should 
never advise it, knowing well that M. de Beaufort was 
incapable of making good use of a return to favour. 

June 3, the queen went to visit the Queen of England, 
who had come from Saint-Germain to spend two weeks in 
Paris for the purpose of gaining the jubilee. 2 Our regent, 
after visiting also the Due d'Orle'ans, who had the gout, 
began herself the stations ordained to receive that sacred 
liberality of the pope, who had granted it to Christians from 
good motives, though it has since served in Naples to further 
the interests of the King of Spain. France wisely took a 
spiritual part hi it, which was preferable to that taken by 
foreigners. The queen visited thirty-seven churches, though 

1 The Due de Beaufort hid himself in the Vendomois, from house to 
house, until the day when he could come to Paris, and go to Prudhomme's 
house. FR. ED. 

2 Plenary indulgence granted by the pope at certain times and on 
certain occasions. TE. 


she was obliged actually to visit but one; and by this 
exemplary piety she induced us to do the same, and quit 
repose for toil in order that by this toil we might acquire 
true rest. 

The evening of the day on which she had gone through 
such fatigue, both devotional and civil, she went, to refresh 
herself after the heat she felt in the streets, to walk in the 
garden of the Palais-Eoyal, where she spent a good part of 
the night ; for her health was such that she could not bear 
excess of any kind. Five persons Mademoiselle Beaumont, 
my sister Mademoiselle Bertaut, commonly called Socratine 
on account of her wisdom, M. de Chandenier, M. de Com- 
minges, and myself had the honour of accompanying her 
on this promenade. The conversation was agreeable and 
free, and capable of bringing us some profit. We spoke of 
what we owed to God by obligation, and what we gave to 
creatures from inclination. We considered to how many 
great things that obligation, bound us, and to how many evils 
that inclination exposed us. After examining those two 
points, we found that we gave nothing to Him to whom 
we owed everything, and all to those to whom we owed 

The two men who were in our little group admitted, 
through equity and a sense of justice, a part of their wrong- 
doing, recognizing its injury; and we, out of sincerity, 
candidly avowed, in the name of our sex, that the too great 
love we felt for ourselves brought us over-much praise and 
applause ; and that often flattery, which we ought to hate, 
made us too sensitive to the love of human creatures. And 
we concluded, to our shame, that the wisest and most vir- 
tuous of women, at the age when she pleases herself and 
desires to please others, has moments when she is neither 
Christian nor virtuous ; for, instead of rendering to God the 


homage that she owes Him, she desires the adoration of 
others, and would like to have over men the empire that 
the Creator alone should possess. 

Neither is she virtuous; because true virtue proceeds 
from the heart and the sentiments of the soul, and it is 
easier to keep the body exempt from corruption than the 
soul without licentiousness, vanity, or weakness. In short, 
we judged the human race on this ground, namely: that 
defects of the spirit are worse by far than the external faults 
which are seen of men ; and that the most virtuous, whether 
men or women, who call themselves earthly sages, are not 
so at all. After this general confession, we followed the 
queen, who went to bed ; and when we left her Aurora was 
just beginning to show, as the poets say, that soon she 
would enrich us with her pearls ; which made us extremely 
lazy on the following day. 

Monday, June 5, parliament assembled, against the orders 
of the queen ; but the chief president, wishing to sometimes 
do his duty, prevented the members from speaking, and 
would not open the session ; so that, after being all assem- 
bled in the great chamber until ten o'clock without saying a 
word, the members were forced to separate. But they did 
not do so without great complaints against their leader, nor 
without muttering loudly against him. 

The next day the same thing was done; and President 
Mesmes, after the chief president had spoken, told them 
they did some wrong in showing tumultuously so little 
respect to the queen's orders; for subjects should always 
testify obedience and submission to their sovereign ; but that, 
nevertheless, he freely admitted they had good reason to 
apprehend harsh chains because of the iron shackles they 
had seen put on others ; and that he was of opinion that the 
assembly ought to employ itself in finding a remedy. On 


that point he blamed the neglect of the Chamber, as much 
as he blamed its impetuosity in other ways ; and he ad- 
vised that parliament should assemble on the Monday fol- 
lowing to consult as to the means of satisfying the queen, 
and of preventing their robes from being torn from their 
backs like those of their neighbours and colleagues, who 
were the first to be maltreated, and were a sign of what 
would sooner or later happen to themselves. 

This speech was blamed by the cardinal ; and the queen 
spoke of it that night, while undressing, to Mademoiselle de 
Beaumont, a friend of Madame de Mesmes. She complained 
of that president as a man who seemed to have bad inten- 
tions, and said that in talking of respect and submission he 
doubtless intended to foment the spirit of sedition and re- 
volt in the souls of his colleagues, and that she saw plainly 
that he wanted to avenge himself on the cardinal, who was 
the sworn enemy of his brother, Comte d'Avaux. These 
opinions were inspired in her by her minister in order to get 
them repeated to that lady, and by that means have them 
reach President de Mesmes and induce him to correct him- 
self in future and change his conduct. 

June 8, the king's lawyers were summoned, and the chan- 
cellor spoke to them at the council in presence of the queen, 
in relation to the resolution of parliament to meet in defiance 
of the prohibition. He told them that the queen, in forbid- 
ding them to assemble, had no intention of opposing the 
privileges of their body, but only to prevent the union of the 
other courts with theirs. After which he enlarged upon 
their rebellion, their want of respect, and upon the claim the 
king made that it did not belong to them to protect the 
other courts against his will. 

The cardinal, on his side, sent for several members of the 
Grand Council and the Cour des Aides, and spoke to them 


humanely, as they said, but very weakly. He assured them 
he wished to oblige them, said that he thought their reasons 
very good, and better than he had supposed them; advised 
them to address themselves to him, as devout men to saints 
in regard to God, in order to obtain their pardon from the 
queen, as much for themselves in general as for those of 
their number who had been exiled ; and he promised to exert 
himself for them, begging, nevertheless, that they would obey 
the king, which was necessary to maintain the due order of 
the State. 

These mild words, in a period of revolt, had no other effect 
than to cause great contempt for the minister and produce 
much ridicule of the weakness and inconsistency of his con- 
duct, which was sometimes too haughty and sometimes too 
humble. This story went the rounds, even of the ladies' 
ruelles, and gave occasion for all France to say that the 
minister was incapable of governing or of guiding the 

June 12, the queen, whose piety was always sacredly 
occupied, in order to honour the festival of the very Holy 
Sacrament, ordered to be set up on this day an altar (re- 
posoir) in the first courtyard of the Palais-Royal, on which 
she placed the finest tapestries of the king and the richest 
ornaments a great queen ever possessed. She ordered, for this 
purpose, a closed crown, to place upon the altar where the 
Saint of saints was to rest, made of the finest crown jewels, 
so rich and splendid that it would have been difficult, if 
estimated, to put a price upon it. 

After having adored Our Lord on that spot, where she 
awaited the procession, she accompanied the Host on foot 
through great heat to Saint-Eustache, taking with her the 
king and the little Monsieur ; and the people, as they saw 
her pass, gave her many benedictions, though already they 


seemed a little alienated from the love they had formerly 
borne her. 

That evening she sent for the lieutenant of police, and 
ordered him to release from prison a man whom President 
Mesmes had sent there because he was found before his door 
writing down the names of all who entered. This man had 
declared on being arrested that he was there by order of the 
Court and belonged to the provost of 1'Isle. The next day, 
on leaving prison, he went to see the queen and complained 
to her of President Mesmes, saying that he had received great 
outrages from his servants. When going to bed that night 
the queen told us, laughing, that she meant to avenge him 
for all the wrongs he had suffered. And she did, in fact, 
avenge him so well that she ordered the grand provost to 
arrest all the servants of the president of whom the man 
complained. 1 

President de Mesmes, seeing clearly that he did not stand 
well at Court, thought himself obliged to act with prudence ; 
he left the game ; and the next day sent his excuses to his 
colleagues, saying that he was ill, and needed change of air. 
He absented himself for some time, in order to avoid the 
two accusations to which he saw himself exposed, namely : 
that of weakness if he spoke in parliament in favour of the 
king, which he was accustomed to do when his duty obliged 
him ; and that of wishing to avenge himself if he said the 
least word that might seem contrary to the king's service. 

He was blamed by those he wanted to satisfy ; they mur- 
mured against him at Court, and his friends on the other 
side said that he was very wrong to abandon his associates 
at this conjuncture, when they were entering into conflict 

1 Omer Talon relates the same fact, and lets it be understood that the 
man was a spy of the queen. " All this," he says, " irritated the public 
mind extremely, as a species of inquisition." FR. ED. 

VOL i. 17 


with the king, and consequently had great need of assistance 
as strong as that of a man like himself. 

Five treasurers of France were put in prison for having 
written circular letters to their colleagues, exhorting them 
not to pay over the taxes that the king demanded, and to 
pay themselves from the sums that passed through their 
hands. The man who wrote the letter was named Frotte", a 
man of worth and zealous for the public good. When he 
learned what had happened to his five colleagues (a mis- 
fortune from which his friends, without his knowing it, had 
saved him) he presented himself to d'fimery [superinten- 
dent of finance] and complained to him that he had not 
been imprisoned with the others, as if it were a great affront 
to him, declaring that his fame and honour were affected by 
his being separated from his colleagues. He continued stead- 
fast in these sentiments, and, shortly after, the prisoners were 
released, because the minister was always inclined on his 
own account to gentleness and pardon. 

June 15, parliament assembled again to discuss the pro- 
tection it wished to give, and claimed that it could give, to 
the other sovereign courts [compagnies]. It chose to delib- 
erate also on the annulling of its decree of union with those 
courts by the order that had been brought to it from the 
king ; and it finally determined that its said decree should 
be maintained in spite of the one by which the king in coun- 
cil had annulled it. It further resolved to meet the next 
day in the Chamber of Saint-Louis for ample deliberation, 
and that deputies from the other courts should be received 
there. Several members on that day made fine harangues 
in support of their opinions, which all went to break up the 
government and blame the conduct of the minister, publicly 
accusing Superintendent d'fimery of extortion and robbery. 

This was a mortal blow to the prosperity of France, and 


made her enemies hope that these intestine wrangles would 
replace them in the fine position from which they were 
driven out by the able leadership of Cardinal Eichelieu and 
the fortunate success of the regency. That this hardihood 
displeased the queen and her minister, it is impossible to 
doubt. After the council held in the cabinet on this affair, 
it was resolved to annul once more this action of the parlia- 
ment. The queen commanded Du Plessis, secretary of State, 
followed by Carnavalet and a few gardes de corps, to go to the 
Palais de Justice and bring to the king that decree so per- 
nicious to the public peace. But the clerks at the Palais 
assembled and cried out in such a way against him and his 
posse, declaring that they would be killed first, that he was 
compelled to return bringing nothing. 

On the 16th, parliament was summoned in a body. It 
came, as usual on foot, to the Palais-Eoyal. To receive it 
legally, the dukes and peers, the marshals of France, and all 
the officers of the crown were assembled. A dais was placed 
in the great cabinet with a platform beneath it, on which 
were the king and queen, seated on a species of throne sur- 
rounded by all the great seigneurs of the Court. The queen's 
face was stern and full of grave majesty which marked a 
threatening anger. 

The chancellor made the members a long discourse in the 
nature of a reprimand, without, however, saying anything to 
affront them. Then, having ordered their edict of union 
to be read aloud, he pointed out the fault they had com- 
mitted in uniting themselves like factious persons with the 
other courts. He made them see how by so doing they had 
fomented rebellion and disobedience among the subjects of 
the king, whom they were, on the contrary, bound to main- 
tain in respect for the laws and order. He also ordered to 
be read aloud the decree of the Council annulling theirs, and 


proved to them that the king, in order to maintain his author- 
ity, was forced to do as he had done. And then, coming to 
their edict of the previous day, in which, without regard to 
the king's command, they re-affirmed that union, he enlarged 
upon their action, representing the great and injurious con- 
sequences which would follow it ; and said that, even were 
it accompanied by good and innocent intentions, it could 
only produce much evil to the State, very bad effects upon 
France, and give great hopes to her enemies. 

He concluded by the reading of another decree given by 
the king that same day. This last contained a long argu- 
ment on all the past and present points, and annulled both 
the edict the parliament had given for the union of the com- 
panies and the one of the preceding day. He ordered the 
members in the king's name to employ themselves in future 
solely in administering justice to his subjects, and com- 
manded them not to meddle again in the affairs of State. 
He told them that the king alone could claim that right as 
his inheritance, together with the power to govern as he 
chose, either by himself or by his ministers. He said that 
the votes in their assemblies had been counted, but not 
weighed; that there were many wise men in their body; 
that his Majesty was grieved to be unable to separate these 
from the others, to praise them publicly and worthily reward 
them on this occasion ; but that he would mark that differ- 
ence when the time came to do so ; and then he gave orders 
to the clerk on the spot to bring to the queen the record 
of the last edict within twenty-four hours. 

The chief president attempted to reply ; but the queen in- 
terrupted him, and told him he could make no answer; 
that, for her part, she knew his good intentions, and that 
sufficed ; and with regard to the factious persons who were 
troubling the peace of the State, she assured them that if 


they did not obey the commands of the king they would be 
punished in their persons, their property, and their posterity. 

In spite of this ceremony, as soon as the parliament re- 
turned to the Palais the members assembled and forbade the 
clerk with one voice to take their edict to the queen as she 
had commanded. Moreover, they notified the delegates from 
the other companies, who were waiting in the Chamber of 
Saint-Louis that they could not assemble with them until 
they had first deliberated among themselves over the orders 
that were given them from the king. 

Politicians, arguing in the cabinet over present affairs, all 
said that the little respect shown by parliament for the pro- 
hibitions of the queen would compel the minister to punish 
it, and to employ against it, in order to maintain the king's 
authority, all the means which vigorous justice could furnish 
for such occasions. But, besides the fact that many persons 
to whom the power of the favourite was displeasing did 
not altogether disapprove of the course taken by parliament, 
those who seemed to counsel punishment did not really wish 
the cardinal to follow their advice. Even if such a course 
had been a certain remedy for the evil, they would not have 
desired it ; for they all wanted the minister's ruin, and would 
have been in despair had he done the right thing to prevent 
the misfortunes which they hoped would lead to it. So that 
the minister, lacking true counsel and, as every one thought, 
firmness, let pass all occasions to arrest the torrent at the 
beginning of its flow ; and as this tolerance greatly increased 
the audacity of parliament, it continued to assemble on the 
following days, and to testify by its unity a great and firm 
resolution to maintain its interests against the king. 

The minister, who did not wish to push things to extrem- 
ities, took the part of gentleness and humility, just as the 
other side took that of force and arrogance. Matters could 


not go on thus, one side threatening and doing no harm, the 
other side offending, but with nothing to fear. It was neces- 
sary that either their boldness should frighten the minister, 
or that he, not willing to be frightened, should send terror 
to their souls by the effects of the sovereign power. But he 
did not take this course ; he laid down his arms and fol- 
lowed, in spite of all ordinary maxims of policy, a system 
of tolerance and gentleness. 

Parliament, on its side, did not send the record it had 
been ordered to convey to the queen ; the members openly 
declared that their edicts should pass and those of the king 
should be null, and they voted to still assemble, in spite 
of the queen's prohibition, in the Chamber of Saint-Louis. 
There they murmured loudly, and made known by their 
speeches not only their own interests (the annual tax for 
themselves and that of the officers justly exciting them), but 
they declared that they meant to take cognizance of the 
administration of the finances and concern themselves in 
the reform of the State, which they insisted was not well 

The attorney-general [Omer Talon], wishing in some de- 
gree to do his duty and, as the king's lawyer, to represent to 
parliament its excessive boldness, said that they were getting 
so forward that either the royal authority would be degraded, 
or that of parliament annihilated ; and he advised, as a wise 
man, that moderation should be given to their passion. 

He was treated as ridiculous by all the youth of the 
assembly, as though he had uttered the greatest nonsense ; 
and he who on so many occasions had shown such partiality 
for the interests of parliament and the public was ill-treated 
at the first word he said in behalf of the king's authority, 
and forced to silence. They all retorted that he was wrong 
in making such remonstrances; that they were as good 


servants of the king as himself ; that what they were doing 
was for the king's service; that they sought only to reform 
the abuses of the State, and especially the bad management 
of the treasury. 

The cardinal, finding that the mutineers held firmly 
against him, resolved to go to them and to win over their 
sullen spirits by smooth words and appeals to their interest. 

The queen, who had threatened as a sovereign and feared 
nothing, believing that exile and imprisonment would put 
an end to such revolts, could with difficulty bring herself 
to follow the wishes of the cardinal. She said to those 
whom she thought his friends that he was too kind, and 
would spoil all by trying to acquire the good graces of his 

She had a great contempt for the robe, and could not 
imagine that that portion of the king's subjects could disturb 
or bring change into his affairs. Moroever, she was ignorant 
of the great events which, from such small beginnings, 
had overthrown the most powerful monarchies and ruined 
the best established empires ; so that, knowing nothing 
but her own grandeur and the external pomp that en- 
virons kings with guards and suites, that very splendour 
(though her virtue made her despise it) rendered her 
incapable of conceiving that her regency, which she saw 
accompanied by so much glory, could have any revolution by 
such low means. This was why she proposed punishment as 
a remedy which must indubitably arrest the revolt at its 
source ; which sentiment was altogether in accordance with 
the good sense and advice of the ablest of her Court. She 
often said to those familiarly about her that she would never 
permit that canaille (meaning the men of the robe) to attack 
the authority of the king, her son ; so that her minister, who 
had not expected their audacity to reach a point at which he 


was compelled to yield, now regretted much that he had 
embittered her mind against parliament. 

The queen, who could be gentle and kind, had, neverthe- 
less, an unparalleled firmness, which showed plainly that, if 
she had been sustained, she would have followed the sternest 
precepts with force and vigour on this occasion, when it was 
a question of punishing servants of the king who sought to 
oppose his authority. She was excusable in having this 
sentiment and this severity, so long as it was limited by the 
reason and kindness which always seemed to overrule in her 
her opposite qualities. It is to be believed that the exile 
of a few persons now would have saved great evils ; for their 
punishment would no doubt have been followed by acts of 
her kindness, which always urged her to do harm to none, 
and to leave every one in the enjoyment of his property and 
office, as in the past. But she was fated to follow the 
will of her minister, and was forced to consent to what he 
desired to do on this occasion. 

He resolved, therefore, with the Due d'0rle*ans and the 
Prince de Cond^, to offer to parliament all it demanded. He 
perceived that he had pushed the sovereign companies too 
far, and he meant that his present gentleness should be the 
remedy. The princes and the cardinal were of one opinion 
on this point, and one day, as they were talking together of 
the queen and her firmness, the minister said that while he 
desired greatly to pacify all things, the queen was valiant, 
like a soldier who is brave because he does not understand 
the danger. 

According to this last resolution all the seniors of both 
Chambers were requested to assemble at the house of the 
Due d'Orldans, who spoke to them cordially, assured them of 
his protection with the queen, promised to intercede for them, 
and made them hope that the annual fee should be again 


granted to them. They were requested to no longer protect 
the masters of petitions, and they were given to understand 
that if they would only make a show of behaving properly 
the latter would soon be restored ; also it was promised that 
if they abolished that name of union, nothing should be 
asked of the other courts whose defence they had taken up ; 
and, finally, that the exiled members should be recalled. 
The chancellor exhorted them with all his might to receive 
with a good grace the favours which the queen granted them 
at the instance of Monsieur, the king's uncle. 

The cardinal also made them a great speech, which con- 
tained the same things and concluded by begging them to 
consider that, being offered all they could desire of the 
queen's kindness, they would, if they refused these favours, 
be guilty towards the people of whatever evils might happen, 
for which they would have to answer before God and man, 
and bear the stigma to posterity. 

This done, it was hoped that matters would be settled; 
for the presidents, who are always more for the Court than 
the councillors, had made the cardinal hope that by means 
of these concessions the assembly would become reasonable. 
But they were not correct in this judgment, nor was the pol- 
icy of the minister advantageous to the State ; which shows 
plainly that the corruption of men is such that, to make 
them live according to reason, they must not be treated 
reasonably ; and in order to make them just, they must be 
treated unjustly. 

Until now parliament had had some right to oppose what 
was done to the supreme courts ; and to tell the truth, the 
public had need of such protection against the sovereign 
power, which might sometimes be alarming in the hands 
of ministers if it did not have the limitations that kings 
themselves have given to it by the intervention of parlia- 


ments. If this celebrated assembly had only taken care to 
accompany its actions and words with more submission to 
the orders of the king and queen, its intentions would have 
been laudable and its humble remonstrances would have 
found their justification in the rules of equity, in the laws 
of the State, and in the opinion of men of worth. But, by 
scorning the kindness that the queen consented to show to 
them on this occasion, they became criminal and proved 
plainly that the passion, injustice, and self-interest of cabals 
into which this body of men had entered, were the motives 
that made them act, and not the public good. 

It must also be said that the cardinal was blamed for 
using these means, because his success was attributed to 
weakness. He would have shamed tyrants by this action 
had it been met by virtuous men whose intentions were up- 
right ; and far from being despised, he would have deserved 
eternal eulogy, because rigour is, in itself, evil ; and if 
the malignity of inferiors did not oblige those who govern 
them to use it, those who are most opposed to such precepts 
would be the worthiest of respect and their fame the most 

This day, however, dishonoured the minister, because he 
had been prodigal of his king's favour, and, by such prodi- 
gality had brought about, through the refusal of parliament, 
a great diminution of the royal power ; but, in truth, it was 
more shameful to parliament than to him, because it marked 
plainly the iniquity of the latter. 

The next day, June 22, the Chambers assembled as usual ; 
and, far from showing themselves content, their deliberations 
went to thanking the Due d'Orle'ans for the care he took of 
their interests; expressing the desire to refuse the favours 
the queen offered them ; and requesting that demonstration 
be made to her that it was not in their own interests that 


they claimed the right to assemble, but because, as good ser- 
vants of the king, they desired to labour in reforming the 
abuses of the State ; and they entreated that for this cause 
her Majesty would not think it ill that they should keep 
to their first resolution. 

Besides this, they requested that the decree issued against 
them be annulled, and their own decree held good and valid. 
This hardihood gave keen annoyance to the minister, who, 
having gone to bed that day earlier than usual out of vexation 
at these ill-adventures, said to one of his friends with much 
irritation that the chancellor and the superintendent [of 
finances] had let him fall into this confusion, and they should 
repent it. 

About this time news was received of the death of the 
King of Poland, which caused no other grief to the queen 
than that of having to wear mourning. She was not so 
well pleased with the widow, on whose head she had placed 
a crown, that she cared to take part in her interests ; in fact, 
had she done so there was more to rejoice at for her sake, 
than to grieve over. The Polish queen had lost a husband 
who never treated her well, who was hateful in his own per- 
son, and who left the kingdom for a brother, who, according 
to all appearances, did not hate her. The latter intended to 
marry her in case he was elected king in place of his elder 
brother. His birth, his friends, and the assistance of the 
Queen of Poland, who had both money and influence, gave 
him reason to hope for that good fortune; and all these 
things happened not long after, to the satisfaction of every 

To return to the parliament, whose actions now became 
the sole preoccupation of the Court. After several delibera- 
tions their last decision was to thank Monsieur and to send 
deputies to the queen, justifying their decree of May 13, 


and the sincerity of parliament, complaining of the insulting 
things read to them in her presence from the decrees of her 
council, demanding the freedom of the prisoners, and assuring 
her Majesty that nothing would be done in the Chamber of 
Saint-Louis that was not for the good of her service. 

The fear that was felt of worse made this conclusion tol- 
erable. It was supposed that the deputies, when they came, 
would make protestations of fidelity and duty to the queen 
which would bring matters to some sort of settlement. The 
next day the queen received them in her little gallery. 
With her were the Due d'0rle"ans, the cardinal, and the 
other ministers according to rank, and the doors were left 
open in expectation of some meekness from the deputies ; 
but the contrary of what was hoped for happened. The ad- 
dress of the chief president was so strong and so bold that 
it surprised the auditors and seemed to offend the queen. I 
shall insert it here, in order to show clearly to those who read 
these Memoirs what was the spirit of this parliament and 
the audacity of its undertaking. Here are the principal 
points, which I noticed myself, having been there and heard 
the speech : 

Summary of the harangue of the chief president. His 
speech turned on the thought that sovereigns ought to reign 
more by love than by fear ; that justice was the chief bond 
between the sovereign and the people; that this justice, 
rendered by the ministry of officials and through them 
distributed to the people, was to-day hampered on all sides. 
That parliament and its members had always believed that 
time was the sovereign remedy of evils ; but, on the contrary, 
those they had to complain of grew worse with time, and 
they must now believe that their continuation would soon 
undermine the authority of the king and the good of the 


State. That nothing was left for parliament to do but to 
serve as barrier to prevent the disorders into which that 
authority had fallen. That his Majesty had been persuaded 
that they had not the right to assemble, whereas it was a 
usual thing to do so. That the word " union " had so shocked 
the minds of those who gave him pernicious counsels (the 
counter-blow of which seemed to shake the royal authority), 
that they had tried to represent parliament and its members 
as factious and seditious persons. That these accusers 
deserved that title much more than they who had never 
had other intentions than those which their innocence and 
their respect for the king inspired in them. That they were 
obliged to let his Majesty know that these same persons 
had concealed from him the precedent of 1618, when they 
assembled for public affairs, and even for the rentes des aides ; 
that the king had then approved all that they had done, 
knowing that it was intended for the good of his service. 
That when they thought of the grandeur of that throne 
before which, a few days ago, the chief parliament of France 
had made honourable amends, but in presence of which 
their edicts of May 13 and June 15 had been publicly read 
and then annulled by decree of the council, and defamed 
by guilty accusations against innocent persons, accusing 
them of divers crimes ; and when they considered all the 
other insults which had been offered to them publicly, 
they were forced to make his Majesty understand that they 
were well assured such insults did not proceed from him ; 
that they were far too sure of his virtue, his piety, and his 
extreme sentiments of kindness. Therefore they doubted 
not he would be soon disabused of the evil impressions 
those persons had given him, and in a short time he would 
see reason to trust parliament. And, in conclusion, that he 
(the chief president) was charged by parliament to make 


known to the king the justice of its decrees; to entreat 
him very humbly to be willing to suppress the decree of his 
council of June 8, given against it ; to consent that the par- 
liamentary decrees should remain upon the register as hav- 
ing been issued with power and justice, and that it would 
please him to make a declaration of the innocence of par- 
liament, which had been accused and insulted without just 
cause. A promise was given that nothing should be done 
in their assemblies that was not for the good of the king's 
service, and that of the public, and for the peace of the 
State. And finally, they conjured him very ardently to con- 
tinue to them the honour of his good-will, with many 
protestations that they were his very humble, very obedient, 
and very faithful servants. 

After this harangue was ended, the queen, quite amazed, 
had the king's lawyers called up and told them that in the 
course of a few days she would make known her will to 

The state of France was such that it was no longer a time 
to attempt rigorous measures without running the risk of a 
great revolution. Parliament had usurped too much author- 
ity. By refusing the offered favours, it had shown to the 
people that it sought only the public good and the cure of 
the evils of the State. 

The people were overwhelmed by taxes of all kinds ; the 
kingdom was impoverished by long wars; every one was 
discontented. The courtiers hated the minister ; all wanted 
a change, more from unruliness of mind than from reason. 
The minister being despised, each took the liberty to follow 
his own caprice ; it seemed to all quite just to shout against 
the tax-brokers, who appeared, in fact, to be the only ones 
who triumphed from the public misery. Men of worth, 


without considering that this is a sometimes necessary evil, 
and that all ages in this respect have been alike, hoped 
through disorder to attain to some greater order; and that 
word " reformation " was as pleasing to them in the light of 
a good principle, as it was to those who wanted disorder 
through the excess of their madness and their ambition. So 
that all, from different motives, raged against the queen and 
against her minister, without considering that it was not 
right to allow parliament to take upon itself the authority 
to reform the State as it chose ; and that such reformation 
would, in consequence, bring with it the destruction of the 
monarchy, through the overthrow which such an abnormal 
combination, so opposed to our laws, so fatal to royalty, 
would cause to the State. 

Those laws contain in themselves, no doubt, the necessary 
rules for the guidance of the people and for their happiness ; 
they are equitable ; justice is their basis ; and the royal 
authority is, and ought to be their supporter. But it must 
also be understood in observing them, as we are bound to 
do, that they subject us, by God's command, to the supreme 
and single will of our kings, without permission under 
any pretext to fail therein. If parliaments have the power 
to correct the faults of kings and their ministers, we do not 
know that those who compose them may not commit greater 
ones, or banish virtue from the throne merely to seat vice 
upon it ; or whether the ambition and the passions of the 
many may not be more dangerous than those of the one. 

By the cardinal's docility and the offers he had made to 
parliament, the latter must have seen that if it had really, 
in good faith, discovered disorder in the finances and asked 
modestly for their reformation, it would have been granted. 
If its members, with fidelity, had served the king usefully, 
and if by their very humble remonstrances the people had 


obtained relief, they would have earned the reputation of 
being judges and subjects without reproach. They would 
indeed have deserved that fame, and kings themselves would 
in future years have esteemed an integrity which had made 
them act so skilfully for the good of the public and the hap- 
piness of the State. 

But they were far indeed from such sentiments, and their 
unbridled audacity made the minister believe that the best 
way to treat them was by dissimulation. He resolved, there- 
fore, to make the following answer to parliament, which was 
infinitely blamed by both sides. June 29 parliament was 
informed by the king's lawyers that "the queen had so 
good an opinion of their fidelity that she could not believe 
their assemblies could be by their own will in any way prej- 
udicial to the service of the king; that being so, she per- 
mitted them to assemble, provided that all their deliberations 
should end within a week." 

On the evening of June 30 the cardinal told the queen 
that he had just received letters from Flanders which in- 
formed him that the enemy were taking heart from the news 
of the proceedings hi parliament ; that the tale had been so 
commented on that they now believed Paris was in arms ; 
which rumour, though false, was having a bad effect on the 
affairs of the king and exciting foreigners to take decisive 

As he felt himself battered by the tempest, he affected such 
humility that he told Madame de Senece" the same evening, 
when she spoke to him of his nieces who were still with her, 
that he begged her to bring them up as ordinary young ladies, 
for he did not know yet what would become of them, or 
of himself either. And as he knew he was accused of taking 
money, he showed, as far as he possibly could, that he was 
disinterested, saying that he did not desire either favour or 


fortune except for the good it enabled him to do to his 

The deputies of parliament and those of the other sover- 
eign courts assembled in the Chamber of Saint-Louis, accord- 
ing to their own will and the consent of the queen. They 
had extorted that permission from her, of whom they made 
little account, either as her favour or that of her minister. 
The first propositions which they now laid down were bold, 
seditious, and all in favour of the public and the people, for 
the purpose of gaining popularity and of giving themselves 
strength by that which makes the strength of kings. These 
proportions were : 

1. To remit to the people one quarter of the taille-iax, 
with which the tax-gatherers now paid themselves. 

2. To remit to the people what they had owed for the last 
few years, which they could not pay on account of their 

3. To revoke entirely the office of provincial intendants, 
who profited by such employments from the mass of the 
people, and to make the treasurers of France, the elected 
and other officers appointed for the purpose, responsible for 
the king's revenues. 

4. That no person should be kept in prison more than 
twenty-four hours before being examined by parliament, 
which in future was to take cognizance of the cause of each 
person's imprisonment. 

5. That no fines or taxes should be imposed upon the 
people without the decrees being duly examined. 

6. That a chamber of justice should be convened, composed 
from the four sovereign courts, to judge supremely the abuses 
and malversations committed in the finances. 

Those were the principal propositions made by parliament, 
which had agreed to work solely for the service of the king. 


The queen in this extremity, to prevent parliament from re- 
establishing the masters of petitions by its own authority, did 
this herself without request. After having indicted and sen- 
tenced them with her own lips, she was forced, in spite of 
the contempt shown for her favours, to replace them in their 
former offices. And, as if to cover royalty with shame, Mon- 
sieur, the king's uncle, at a complimentary visit which some 
of the parliament paid to him to thank him for having 
shown that he favoured them, again offered to work for 
them, and they on behalf of the parliament, accepted his 

July 6, the Due d'Orle'ans went to parliament and, in a 
great speech, endeavoured to show the members that their 
proceedings gave false hopes to the enemy, which might turn 
into true ones, against their intentions, if they did not take 
the side of the king as well as that of the public ; that, not- 
withstanding the dangerous consequences of their conduct, 
the queen did not object to the desire they showed to remedy 
the evils of the State ; but she wished it to be without injury 
to the grandeur and happiness of France, and she therefore 
begged them to suspend the edict they had given against the 
provincial intendants. In conclusion Monsieur offeped them 
a conference on all their propositions, promising his protection 
and entire sincerity in all matters there treated, as a prince 
who, never having deceived any one, would surely not begin 
with a company for whom he had much affection ending 
his speech with a few complimentary words. 

That same day, the masters of petitions came to the Palais- 
Eoyal in a body to thank the queen for the favour she had 
bestowed in restoring them. Her Majesty received them in 
her great cabinet, with her usual company, namely, the Due 
d'Orle'ans, the cardinal, the chancellor, and the four secreta- 
ries of State. Their harangue was humble and full of grati- 


tude. They then went to Monsieur, and afterwards to the 

July 7 and 8 were spent in conferences at the Luxem- 
bourg. These took place in the great gallery. The Due 
d'Orle'ans sat in his arm-chair opposite to Cardinal Mazarin ; 
beside him was the chancellor, then came the chief president 
and the other members on simple stools. The latter all ex- 
pressed much satisfaction with the Due d'Orle'ans and the 
kindness he had shown to them in their conferences. Depu- 
ties from all the chambers and sovereign courts were present, 
and the matters proposed in the Chamber of Saint-Louis 
were discussed. The cardinal addressing them praised their 
zeal for the service of the king ; and the very men who, a 
few days earlier, were treated as rebels in the queen's pres- 
ence, and who, in very truth, were quasi destroying the 
royal authority, were now called by the minister restorers of 
France and fathers of the country. 

This inconsistency of conduct gave to the spies upon his 
defects a fine subject on which to ridicule and despise him 
and treat him as a weakling, reproaching him for having 
none of the heroic virtues that great men ought to practise 
in the guidance of great States ; for it is a general precept 
that kingdoms must be governed by laws, maintained by 
firmness and by uniform control. 

During these conferences certain members of parliament 
were fomenting intrigues against d'Emery, the superintend- 
ent of finance. His office, which they desired to obtain, was 
the real cause of the complaints that now burst forth against 
him. 1 They made a pretext of no longer being able to en- 
dure that the man who had attacked them should continue 

1 Montglat, in his Memoirs (Fourteenth Campaign), relates the exac- 
tions of d'Emery, who "ruined every one to find money with which to 
carry on the war, and also to satisfy the greed of the cardinal, which was 
insatiable." Fn. ED. 


to control the finances of the country. They therefore pro- 
posed to the minister to dismiss him. Every one became 
eager for his ruin, some from self-interest, others from mere 
caprice. The man seemed loaded down with public hatred, 
and those whose interests were against him made the cardi- 
nal hope that by his dismissal all other things would be 
made easy for him. D'Bmery's friends at Court, seeing 
from afar the storm that was preparing to burst upon his 
head, worked to support him with all their strength ; for, as 
he paid them well, they served him well in return. But the 
cardinal, imagining that he could buy his own tranquillity 
by d'fimery's ruin, resolved to sacrifice him to the public 
good, and to his own in particular. 

During these days, when the fate of this man was uncer- 
tain and there were still favourable moments for him in the 
mind of him who was master of it, and then again very bad 
ones in which the minister looked upon the ruin of the 
superintendent as the source of his own prosperity, it hap- 
pened that one of d'Emery's friends proposed, in the Cham- 
ber of Saint-Louis, to make inquiry as to the moneys which 
were sent out of France. Certain friends of the minister 
warned him of this, and several of the members of parlia- 
ment put aside the proposal, because they saw that it went 
direct to him personally. They did not like him, but they 
had found him so docile and accommodating that they 
judged it was now a good time to use his apparent softness 
to attain their ends; they determined therefore to begin 
with the superintendent before going on to other works. 

The cardinal, knowing that the person who had proposed 
the inquiry into the exported moneys was one of d'^mery's 
friends, believed that the superintendent had instigated that 
proceeding in order to entangle him and involve him in his 
own conduct, thus making him either his defender or his 


accomplice. This proposal having had no effect against the 
minister, it had, necessarily, a very bad one for the superin- 
tendent ; inasmuch as it gave cause to the cardinal to aban- 
don him more readily to the public wrath ; and even to do 
this with some justice, because he could accuse d'Emery of 
having tried to ruin him. The affair being in this state, on 
the evening of the 8th, after the conclusion of the conference 
at the Luxembourg, his dismissal was arranged by the 
queen, the Due d'0rle*ans, and Cardinal Mazarin ; which 
solved a question they had been discussing for a week 
among themselves. 

The next morning, about midday, Le Tellier went to see 
d'Emery on the part of the queen, and commanded him to 
retire from Court within two hours. It is to be supposed 
that this embassy was not agreeable to the superintendent. 
He beheld his misfortune, not without foreseeing and ap- 
prehending it, but certainly without having fully believed 
in it, because he had always hoped his friends would save 
him. The Abbe* de La Eiviere, on whom many things 
turned in consequence of the greatness of the man he ruled, 
had given d'Emery the hope that he would serve him. The 
Mare*chal de Villeroy and several others worked for him, but 
neither the abbe* nor any one else could succeed in main- 
taining him. 

He had always nattered himself with the belief that the 
minister would never abandon him, and never give such 
advantage to parliament, because, if he did, he himself in 
all probability would be the next to suffer ; for, no longer 
having this object of hatred before their eyes on which to 
expend their maledictions, and the spirit of revolt not being 
likely, according to all appearances, to cease with his ruin, 
it was to be expected that on his disappearance the minister 
himself would be attacked, and therefore his own interests 


would oblige him to maintain him. D'fimery was mistaken 
in his reasoning ; but this is not surprising ; men usually 
think differently on the same subject, because they them- 
selves have different ideas and different interests. 

The king's governor [the Mare'chal de Villeroy] went to 
visit d'fimery a quarter of an hour after he had received the 
order, and was as much surprised to find his friend exiled 
as he was mortified at knowing nothing about it. Two 
days earlier the queen had treated me with more confidence ; 
for she did me the honour to tell me, speaking of the super- 
intendent, that he was certainly much hated, and it seemed, 
as every one wished his dismissal, that it would have to 
take place. By which I judged that his affairs were going 
badly, and that this witty and vicious hog who despised 
us 1 because men of business care only for those who have 
influence with a minister I judged, I say, that this man, 
whom the world regarded with some envy on account of his 
wealth and the luxuries of his living, was about to become 
an object of compassion, an example of the vicissitude of 
the things of this life, and to teach us more strongly than 
ever that " the fashion of this world passeth away." 

They sent immediately for the Mare'chal de La Meilleraye, 
grand-master of artillery, and gave him the superintendence 
of finance, as being a man whose heart seemed superior to 
the greed of riches, having, by reason of his great establish- 
ments and fortune, no need of them. This seigneur, who, 
in the days of Cardinal Eichelieu had shown his courage on 
many signal occasions, had a noble soul and professed openly 
to love virtue and honour ; but with all his fine qualities, he 
was judged not fitted for this office : first, because his health 
was bad ; next, because he knew more of war than of money ; 
and lastly, because his temper was violent. Moreover, he 

1 D'Emery was very fat. FK. ED. 


was suspected of wishing to marry his only son to one of 
the cardinal's nieces, and that reason alone sufficed to make 
him hated by the silly populace. 

As he was an honest man and much esteemed, the Court 
was glad, and men of honour felt that they had gained a 
support and that the new superintendent would consider the 
merit of persons rather than their favour. In fact, during 
the short time he remained in office, though it was an evil 
time and full of wretchedness, he satisfied every one by his 
honest way of dealing and retained all his friends ; instead 
of the thieves who had hitherto ruined others by taking every- 
thing for themselves, this man took nothing for himself and 
let all go into the coffers of the king, drawing down upon 
his head the benedictions of those who saw his integrity. 

As soon as he was settled hi office he sent the procureur- 
general to say to parliament that his intention was to satisfy 
it by his conduct of affairs ; that, being disinterested and 
faithful to his master, he believed he could hope to please 
parliament by serving him well, and in that he would 
willingly employ the remainder of his life. But certain of 
the parliament, who no longer set limits to their audacity 
and lawlessness, laughed at him, and treated him as a weak- 
ling. In truth, he deserved it for having made them a 
submission he did not owe to them. He was blamed for 
having gone against his nature to do ill, for he was never 
suspected of being too humble. They gave him as assist- 
ants Morange and d'Aligre, who signed all documents under 
him, men of integrity, who could not be suspected of pec- 
ulation, or of allowing it in others, who apparently hated 
the tax-jobbers as heartily as the most jealous of the parlia- 
ment ; but men, nevertheless, of more virtue than capacity ; 
I mean by that the capacity which finds means to enrich 
kings without impoverishing their subjects. 


SUPERINTENDENT D'^MERY being ousted, it seemed as if 
the troubles would now be appeased; fate had overtaken 
him, and public safety would, it was hoped, be found in his 
ruin. But minds were not satisfied with this one victory. 
The facile concessions of the minister greatly increased the 
hopes of the rebels, and parliament henceforth began to 
attribute to itself so excessive a power that there was reason 
to fear that the evil example it saw in that of England 
would make an impression upon it, and that those of the 
assembly who had good intentions would be misled by the 
others. The kingdom was getting more and more impover- 
ished daily ; domestic peace was disturbed and France was 
in a state to fear civil war. The queen was forced to 
borrow money of private persons and to put the crown 
jewels in pawn. The very kitchen of the king was un- 
supplied, and in order to pay the servants the minister was 
obliged to pawn some large diamonds and get certain of his 
friends to lend him what more was needed for this purpose. 
The Princesse de Cond^ lent the queen 100,000 livres ; the 
Duchesse d'Aiguillon offered her money, and many others 
did likewise. 

So, in bringing order into the State nothing came of it 
but disorder ; and the worst of all was that the greater part 
of the king's subjects did not desire that this evil state of 
things should cease. The people, hoping to save themselves 
from taxes and tithes, aspired to nothing but trouble and 


change, and appeared to confide in parliament for protection. 
Each counsellor seemed to them an angel descended from 
heaven to save them from the tyranny of the cardinal, which 
they imagined to be greater than it really was. 

The conferences of the ministers and parliament held at 
the Luxembourg, Monsieur's residence, ended in resolving 
that the king should issue a declaration which should 
amount to the same thing as the decree given by parliament 
against the provincial intendants, in order to save by this 
ruse the royal authority, and let the measure seem to have 
come from the will of the queen. In this declaration the 
king excepted only three departments of justice, at which 
parliament murmured loudly ; for it wished there should 
be no exception. 

The Due d'Orle'ans made several visits to parliament, 
during which new propositions were made in his presence. 
One of them was found to be, under present necessities, 
very convenient for the king, namely : to put an end to the 
partisans [companies for the levying of taxes] and to keep 
back the money of loans made by private individuals. Such 
persons had lent to the king on the faith of brokers and 
superintendents, and from these loans they were drawing 
high interest. Nearly all the families in Paris were en- 
riched in this way. 1 It was not legitimate. Stern casuists 
assert that it is forbidden by the gospel; it is, moreover, 
long known to be very injurious to the State and to the 
king's affairs ; because such great usury ate up his revenues 
and emptied the coffers of his treasury. It was therefore 

1 Omer Talon, relating this shameful proposition, says it was President 
de Novion who chiefly defended it. Cardinal de Retz, in his Memoirs, 
declares that the courtiers, who had nearly all invested their money in 
loans made to the king at immense usury, uneasy at the bankruptcy with 
which they were thus threatened, urged Mazarin to take decisive measures 
against parliament. FK. ED. 


advantageous to the king to have a pretext to make bank- 
rupt many persons of all conditions who had put their 
property into loans. But as all families, whether of the 
Court or city, had interests in this, a great outcry arose in 
Paris at the proposal. It seemed unjust, and displeased 
individuals as much as it pleased the minister, who saw the 
king usefully relieved in this way of a heavy burden. 

President Mesmes, who had now returned, often gave the 
sternest advice, but always for the good of the State; so 
that there were days and moments when the cardinal believed 
that perhaps these disorders would end in a better regulation 
of the king's affairs and that he should reap the benefit. 
His policy was to risk nothing himself, and try to draw 
some advantage from the schemes of parliament and the 
ruin of the partisans ; but at the same time it was evident 
to others that he would finally be forced to change that 
method, which could not possibly succeed. 

The Due d'0rle*ans returned to parliament July 13; and 
because the first declaration of the king, excepting the three 
departments of justice, was not agreeable to the assembly, 
it was thought best to produce a second, establishing a 
Chamber of Justice such as parliament had desired, in which 
it would be permitted to work at the reformation of abuses 
committed in the finances. 

Parliament, as usual, deliberated ; and it was ordered that 
Monsieur should be very humbly entreated to induce the 
queen to send a revocation of the order against the in- 
tendants because the one that had been sent included only 
the jurisdiction of the parliament of Paris. Also, in regard 
to the taille tax, to bring the queen to remit to the people 
the payment of all arrearages up to the year 1646 ; and for 
those of 1647, 1648, and 1649, that the queen be entreated, 
if her affairs permitted, to remit one quarter. Also that 


the declaration as to the Chamber of Justice be registered ; 
and that her Majesty be entreated by the Due d'Orle'ans 
that there should be no commissioners in it but those from 
the parliament, the chambre des comptes, and the cour des 
aides; and that the fines and confiscations ordered by the 
said Chamber should not be diverted or given away, but 
employed solely in meeting the most urgent expenses of the 

The evening of that day the queen said to us, speaking of 
her affairs, that what had taken place in the morning was 
not of much good, for it merely marked the power that par- 
liament was assuming in the State ; but nevertheless, since 
they had shown a desire to further a scheme for reforming 
it, without directly offending the king, she hoped some 
advantageous results could be reached regarding his finances, 
and that what they were then doing would bring many mil- 
lions back to the treasury. 

Nothing was comparable to the satisfaction parliament 
showed at the behaviour and fine qualities of the Due 
d'Orle'ans. He spoke with kindness and eloquence in their 
public and private conferences, showed that he acted with 
judgment, and answered all their difficulties with intelligence 
and gentleness ; and as these matters were all produced by 
the immediate occasion, his answers could be attributed to 
none but himself. The queen also had reason to be satisfied. 
She was so, and seemed to be grateful to the duke for the 
care and affection he showed for the good and the peace of 
the State, and for her repose in particular. 

July 14 the duke went again to parliament. The deliber- 
ations did not then turn to the advantage of the king, and 
the courtiers said that the State was afflicted with intermit- 
tent fever. That same day the queen said to us, with much 
vexation, that she no longer understood anything; that things 


had always to be done over again, and she was tired of hear- 
ing every day, " We will see what they do to-morrow." Cer- 
tainly this great princess felt the blood of her illustrious 
forefathers boiling in her veins, and could not endure the 
empire assumed, little by little, by this mutinous crowd. I 
know that one day, at the council, in presence of the Due 
d'Orle'ans, she seemed to wish to blame her minister, and told 
him that she did not approve of his conduct. 

In consequence of that, when the duke had gone and the 
cardinal was alone with her as usual, after receiving with 
humility all that the queen was pleased to say to him, 
he answered, driven by distress and perhaps by fear: "In 
short, Madame, I see that I have displeased your Majesty. 
I have ill-succeeded in the purpose I have always had 
to serve you well. It is just that my head should answer 
for it." On which the queen, who was gentle and always 
kind to him, being persuaded of his good intentions and 
his disinterestedness, told him that she would not punish 
him for his misfortune, and that he ought to be convinced 
that he could never lose through those qualities either her 
confidence or her affection. 

Another day, at about the same time, wishing to extol 
to us the excellent nature of the king, she did us the honour 
to relate how the cardinal the preceding evening, had warned 
her to be careful of her health, saying that she did not look 
well ; and on her replying that she did not mind dying, con- 
sidering the miserable state of her affairs, the king, over- 
come by grief, began to cry tenderly and she had much 
trouble in soothing him. This indifference to death was a 
sign in the queen of discontent ; and the sentiment gave 
comfort to everybody ; for it seemed then as though it would 
be advantageous for herself and the State if she had been 
even more uneasy, so that, seeing the evil, she might have 


striven to remedy it. That remedy would have been in al- 
lowing herself to be less governed and in acting more in ac- 
cordance with her own sentiments and her own ideas, which 
certainly seemed to be instinctively opposed to the policy of 
her minister. 

The cardinal in those days (July, 1648) had moments of 
fear. Those who enlarged before the queen on the harm 
that parliament did the State were suspected by him of wish- 
ing to make her quarrel with him and thus do him evil 
offices. D'Emery 's friends were taxed with this purpose 
more than others, and were accused of talking in this way 
with malicious intent contrary to his interests. The Mare*chal 
de Villeroy suffered much from this; but as he was very 
adroit, he smothered the rumour which was spread against 
him with so many fine appearances, carefully assumed, that 
he not only saved himself from danger, but also from angry 
glances, which are always annoying to such as he. 

The cardinal complained to the Marquis de Senneterre, 
who told me about it a few hours later. He told him ex- 
pressly (intending to make him by implication the same 
reproach) that d'Emery's friends had blamed his conduct 
and begged the protection of the Abbe* de La Kiviere, not 
thinking his power sufficient to save them. On which 
Senneterre replied that it was true d'Emery had sought the 
friendship of that man to serve him, in union with other 
friends, with the Due d'Orle'ans; but that they had no 
intention in so doing of caballing against him, the minister, 
or of supporting d'Emery against him ; that they were too 
clever courtiers to have any such chimeras ; and that if they 
had wanted to attack his authority there were much better 
means than that, such as persuading the Due d'Orle'ans by 
their friend La Eiviere, to listen to the proposals that were 
daily made to him to become regent. So far from doing 


that, the cardinal had been so well served by all of them 
that Monsieur, like Germanicus, had rent his garments at 
the mere proposition. 

The star was now terribly against kings; and here is a 
proof of it. On this very day, July 14, Mademoiselle de 
Beaumont and I went to see the Queen of England, who had 
retired to the Carmelite convent, to soothe the grief she felt 
at the departure of her son, the Prince of Wales, who had 
gone to Calais, intending to sail for Scotland, where he hoped 
to touch the hearts of his subjects by his presence. 

We found her alone in a little chamber, writing and making 
up despatches, as she told us, of great importance. They were 
just finished, and she then described to us the apprehensions 
she felt as to the success of this voyage, and confided to us 
her present necessities, greatly increased by those of our king 
and queen. She showed us a little gold cup from which she 
drank, and said she had no other gold, of any kind whatever, 
except that. She told us, moreover, that after the Prince 
of Wales departed, all her servants came to her demanding 
money, telling her they should leave her if she did not pay 
them ; this she could not do, and so had the grief of knowing 
herself unable to remedy the wants of her officers, who now 
overwhelmed her with their miseries. She added that the 
officers of her mother, Queen Marie de' Medici, had done 
much worse, and that being in England at the beginning 
of their troubles, and she and the King finding themselves 
unable to give them money as punctually as before, these 
officers presented claims upon her to the English parliament, 
which had caused her great distress. 

This description moved us to compassion, and we could 
not wonder enough at the evil influence that seemed to rule 
over these crowned heads, victims of the two parliaments of 
France and England, ours being, thanks to God, very differ- 


ent from the other in its intentions, and different also in its 

July 17 the Due d'Orldans went again to parliament to 
carry to it the declarations of the king containing all that 
parliament had demanded. There had been many disputes 
in council as to the more or the less, but all was finally 
done according to the good pleasure of parliament ; and the 
king might esteem himself fortunate that it was willing to 
receive, under an appearance of his name and authority, 
that which it had already ordained for his State. 

On the following days parliament put forward other points, 
among them the following : it being publicly notorious that 
the king's farms were let at a cheap price, and no bids re- 
ceived for them, nor any awards made in due form, other 
auctions should be held ; and the court of parliament ordered 
that an article to that effect be included in the written 
representations to be made to the queen. 

Parliaments have certainly the power to make remon- 
strances to our kings, telling them the truth in the strongest 
manner in which they can explain it without failing in the 
respect which subjects owe to their sovereign. They are, 
after the States-general, the most violent remedy which up 
to this time sovereign companies have been able or have 
dared to apply to the ills of the State. But, thanks be to 
God, we were now living in an age when, by the virtues of 
the queen, by her kindness and upright intentions, we had 
no need of reformations which excess of evils and perils 
render useful and necessary. She wished that all under 
her reign should enjoy a sweet tranquillity, occupied only 
in serving God and the king. What the minister wanted 
to do against the masters of petitions and the parliaments 
had alarmed her, and with some cause ; but the clemency 
of the queen at their first appeal, and their public sorrow, 


would easily have disposed her to give them better treat- 
ment ; and the cardinal let it be seen, on this occasion, that 
he was not, as I have elsewhere remarked, incapable of giv- 
ing himself a lesson to prefer the public good to his personal 

That is why so many remonstrances and such clamour 
were neither just nor necessary, because the queen, with a 
spirit of wisdom and piety, preferring gentleness to severity, 
and the relief of the people to the pleasure of being implic- 
itly obeyed, had followed the advice of her minister and her 
own disposition to seek as far as possible the welfare of the 
king's subjects though it is true that this last indulgence, 
inasmuch as it might pass for weakness, caused her pain. 
She made no secret of this ; she acknowledged it freely to 

We must acknowledge, to the shame of our nation and 
in order to correct its faults, that the rebellions made by the 
people in this country have nearly all been unjust and ill- 
founded. Our kings, issuing from the greatest race on earth, 
before whom the Caesars and most of the princes who for- 
merly commanded many nations are but roturiers, have given 
us saints of their blood ; while none of them have deserved 
the name of " wicked " as some we find in other monarchies, 
who, in their epoch, have been execrated by their peoples 
and are still the objects of horror and wrath to those who 
read their lives. 

Our great monarchs have had defects, and some have 
committed crimes which have been blamed according to 
their magnitude, or excused so far as they deserved to be, 
but we have never seen in France a Christian II. as in Den- 
mark, a Pedro the Cruel as in Spain, a Henry VIII. as in 
England, with many others who are dishonoured for their 
abominable actions ; but we have had a Charles V., the wisest 


prince that ever was, who, as dauphin, was nearly crushed 
beneath the unjust rebellion of his people. Henri III. suf- 
fered another which, as a king, he did not deserve, for he 
was valiant, kind, learned, and able, and if, as a man, he 
was a sinner while wishing to appear devout, God alone, and 
not his subjects, should judge him, to punish or to pardon. 

I do not speak of the war which, after the death of this 
prince, was made under Henri-le-Grand. We owe greater 
faithfulness to God than to a king ; and those who, from a 
true motive of conscience and religion, took part against him 
were excusable in refusing a heretic king. We can blame 
only the ambition of the princes of the League, who, under 
a noble pretext, were visibly endeavouring to usurp the 
crown. But God, no doubt, made use of their unrighteous 
desire to preserve France from the evils of heresy. 

Kings, according to the obligations imposed upon them 
from on high, ought to will that their subjects should find 
protection hi them and in the officers and judges of then* 
kingdom. All wise princes must desire that the good should 
not be oppressed, and that the wicked should be punished. 
The parliaments of France were instituted to labour at this 
great work ; and sometimes the kings themselves have 
found in their regulations assistance and succour against 
their own disorders. But parliament, in the present instance 
had encroached upon the royal power, and chosen to do that 
which the king alone had the right to ordain ; and as, un- 
fortunately, our king was then too young to exercise that 
right, and his minister under the minority had not power 
enough to enforce it, it was impossible that this ill-regulated 
state of things should lead to good order in France. For, after 
all, these reformations were being made by mischief-makers, 
whose sole object was the ruin of the cardinal, the grandeur 
of the princes through the attachment many of the parlia- 

VOL. I. 19 


ment felt to them, and the elevation of certain individuals 
It is easy, therefore, to judge by all these things that what 
was now doing tended towards the ruin of the State, and 
that God would not bless the labours of these men, whose 
iniquity was visible ; for " the wisdom of man shineth on his 
face, and wickedness will not save the wicked." 

The other parliaments, following the example of that of 
Paris, rebelled also. Ours in Normandie demanded the revo- 
cation of the semestre, declaring that it was unjustly estab- 
lished in the time of the late king and Cardinal Eichelieu, 
who never allowed them to lift then- heads. Thus all 
things in the internal affairs of France were in a bad 

The Prince de Conde*, impatient at being with the army, 
doing nothing, and perhaps a little jealous of the reputation 
of the Due d'Orle'ans, wanted to take part in the affair of 
the parliament. He wrote of it to the Marechal de Gra- 
mont, one of his friends, and begged him to go to Court and 
secretly propose his return. The cardinal, who was very 
glad to balance the power between the two princes, con- 
sented willingly, on condition that the prince would take 
the queen by surprise, and that she should not appear to 
have listened to his proposal. 

Immediately after this consent, about the 20th of July, it 
was known that the Prince de Cond was about to return 
from the army ; and this return astonished the whole Court. 
The queen, Monsieur the king's uncle, and Cardinal Mazarin 
had often determined together that if they were constrained 
to use open force against parliament, the Prince de Conde* 
should be sent for at once. But as this determination was 
still indefinite, and the minister had, so far, followed a 
course of great gentleness and humility, the return of the 
prince had been delayed, and the Due d'Orle'ans now felt 


much surprised on hearing it was about to take place. He 
could not believe that the queen and cardinal knew nothing 
of this intention, and he was angry, saying openly that he 
had cause to complain of the queen, who, without a word to 
him, called another to her assistance who could not serve 
her better than he was doing, or with more affection. 

The Abbe* de La Riviere, from whom I heard all these 
particulars, came to see the queen, and made her his 
master's complaints, promising that he would try to smooth 
them, but declaring also that he was very angry and he 
doubted if he could pacify him. The queen and her min- 
ister told him that they had known nothing of the prince's 
return ; and that the Mare*chal de Gramont had doubtless, 
on a few words carelessly said, and possibly without thought, 
given rise in the prince's mind to the desire to return to 
Court. To this the abbe* replied that his master desired that 
the Prince de Conde*, who was expected to arrive in one hour, 
should be sent back, inasmuch as he came without orders. 

The cardinal, troubled by this little storm, got into the 
abbe"s carriage and went to see the Due d'Orle'ans. To him 
he protested his ignorance and tried to soothe his vexation 
by all the finest words his eloquence could produce. The 
Due d'Orle'ans was not to be appeased in that way, and the 
cardinal returned to the queen, to seek with her some means 
of satisfying the duke, to whom she was really under obli- 
gations for his fidelity ; for it may be said that up to this 
time he had lived with her in a perfectly praiseworthy 
manner. To find a remedy for his complaints it was re- 
solved, after a long conference between the queen, the cardi- 
nal, and the Abbe* de La Rivi&re, that the queen should ask 
Monsieur to be willing for her to receive the Prince de 
Conde*, on the promise that she would send him back to the 
army as soon as she could. 


The prince, on his arrival, was received by the queen with 
a smiling face ; and he, in his heart, was pleased and con- 
tent ; for he had been warned about Monsieur's vexation, 
which was joy to him, emulation being natural to persons 
of his birth. He stayed an hour with the queen and her 
minister, and then went to his own house, where all the 
people of quality flocked to do him homage. The next day 
Monsieur and he dined together at the cardinal's, where 
they seemed good friends, and according to all appearance, 
thought of nothing but laughter and good cheer. 

The same day, by a special piece of luck which gave the 
queen a chance to keep the promise she had given to Mon- 
sieur, news was received that the enemy's army gave signs 
of advancing with certain designs upon ours. So that the 
next morning, Sainte-Madeleine's day, the prince took leave 
of the queen and returned hastily. He had had thirty-five 
thousand men under his command ; but with that army he 
had not prevented the taking of Courtray, a very important 
place. For sole exploit, he had taken Ypres in a week, a 
large town, the taking of which was of little importance to 
us. His army after that second-rate exploit was diminished. 
This general, destined for great actions, not being at liberty 
to act as he wished, but compelled by the queen's orders 
to undertake nothing, was deprived of certain victories, 
which without the troubles in Paris that diminished the 
royal authority, he would certainly have won. 

The Mare"chal de Schomberg, not standing well at Court, 
had been constrained to take command of the army in 
Catalonia, which General de Sainte-Ce'cile, brother of Cardi- 
nal Mazarin, had resigned in disgust. The Mare"chal went 
there with little money, little favour, and few men; and 
those who make it a business to laugh at others said satiri- 
cally that whoso wanted to go into perilous places should 


follow the marshal; by which they meant that his adven- 
tures would end in serenades to Spanish ladies ; for though 
he was not young, he was still gallant. But a courier pres- 
ently arrived from him, July 26, informing the queen of the 
taking of Tortosa, which he had besieged for a short time. 
As he knew that the enemy were marching in great haste 
to relieve the place, he took it by assault and cut every one 
to pieces. A general massacre took place, with such re- 
sistance that the bishop of the city was found among the 
foremost killed in the breach, with a pike in his hand. This 
prelate had gone himself to defend the walls, accompanied 
by all the priests and monks of the city, who followed his 
example on this perilous occasion. 

The Mare'chal de Schomberg received all the glory he 
deserved for so fortunate, bold, and fine an enterprise; but 
his favour at court was not increased by it : it is not always 
virtue or noble actions which give that. 

July 28 the queen had the Te Deum chanted at Notre- 
Dame. The king went on horseback, with a little buff- 
leather collar, and all the Court followed him in good order, 
with much embroidery, plumes, and ribbons. 

The enemy took advantage of the Prince de Condi's little 
journey to Paris. They besieged Fumes in his absence, a 
place in no wise strong, which the prince had taken two 
years before in three hours. It was not of much conse- 
quence to us, but was near to Dunkerque, which the enemy 
apparently intended to attack, for they regretted the loss of 
it. La Moussaye brought the news to Court and charged 
Mare'chal de Eantzau with not having taken sufficient pre- 
cautions, of neglecting the place to preserve a little fort 
called the Knoque, between Ypres and Fumes, and of not 
observing the orders he had received from the Prince de 
Condd before he started for Paris. To finish this news of 


war, Marshal Du Plessis, who was in Italy with the troops 
of the king and the Duke of Modena, besieged Cremona. 

July 29, the deputies of parliament came to make their 
statements to the queen on the disorders they complained 
of in the government, and also on the remainder of the 
propositions drawn up in the Chamber of Saint-Louis. The 
latter chamber the queen and cardinal wanted to put an end 
to ; but in spite of the three declarations the Due d'Orldans 
had taken to parliament, it insisted on continuing that 
assembly with new propositions. 

After many councils held on the subject, the queen re- 
solved to take the king to parliament in order to end the 
contest by granting all demands. She even wished to give 
them something more, in order to win over the people to the 
king. A declaration was therefore drawn up in which she 
loaded them with favours ; and at the same time forbade 
them to assemble, intending to use the utmost rigour if they 
disobeyed this order ; she herself saying so openly, that it 
might be told throughout Paris and that none of the mem- 
bers could ignore it. 

She said to us that she was going to parliament to fling 
roses on their heads ; but if after that they were not good, 
she should know how to punish them ; adding that if 
she had been believed at the beginning of the revolt she 
should not now be seeking means to end it ; and that she 
ought to have taught them their duty on the first day they 
abandoned it ; but that now she had at last conquered the 
cardinal's gentleness, and made him resolve in open council 
to endure no more. 

She said to us, moreover, that, for her part, she laughed at 
the consequences the council were always apprehending; 
that revolts were not so easy to make in Paris; that the 
regiment of the Gardes would suffice to repress the first up- 


rising of the populace; and at the worst, twenty or thirty 
houses pillaged would be the expiation of their disobedience. 
She added that she should be sorry for this, but that such 
an evil was less than that of the ruin of the State ; and that 
in the council they had all made war upon her for the joy 
she felt at being on the eve of punishing those mutineers; 
telling her that she feared she might be obeyed because 
she should then have the vexation of losing that joy. She 
showed us, in truth, a great desire to avenge herself upon 
those who had attacked her authority. She was stung by 
the lowering of the royal dignity, and felt the contempt that 
parliament had shown for the gentleness, reason, and good- 
will she had wished to show in its favour. 

The queen went to parliament, as proposed, on the 30th of 
July, in the usual order, for the purpose of doing favours to 
all, or of punishing those who did not receive those favours 
with the gratitude and respect they owed to her. It had 
been resolved in council, in order to acquire the good-will of 
the people, that instead of the half-quarter rescinded on 
the taille-t&x, by order of parliament, the whole quarter 
should be yielded up to them, so that this liberality should 
seem to them to proceed from the will of the king only. 
We shall see, by the effects which this declaration will pro- 
duce in course of time, what good reason the queen had to 
expect opposition and to wish to punish the ingratitude 
of both parliament and people. 

This declaration read, the procureur general. Talon, made 
an harangue, which was fine. The chancellor then took the 
opinions, and there were members insolent enough to answer 
that they would inform him the next day of what they 
should do. Finally the said declaration was received and 
passed, with very little gratitude for the favours granted. 
The chancellor turned to the queen and spoke to her ; then 


to Monsieur and the cardinal ; after which, he sat down, and 
at once announced to the assembly the gift the queen made 
of the annual fee without commission to the four sovereign 
courts to wit: the court of parliament, the chambre des 
comptes, the cour des aides, and the grand council, for a 
period of nine years. 

The queen, on leaving the great hall, said to the chief 
president that she expected him to obey the orders of the 
king, and henceforth prevent the parliament from meeting 
again. She said also to President de Bellievre that it was 
his place to begin and hold his Chamber in the Tournelle. 
They answered respectfully that they would obey her ; but 
they could not do so. 

That day the king looked handsomer than he did on his 
first visit to parliament. The stiffness of his face had passed 
off, it was no longer swollen ; but he had lost the delicate 
beauty which made every one admire him; the roses and 
lilies had left his complexion, but only to leave him another 
skin more suited to a warrior than a lady; which was 
beautiful enough, however, to please all fair ones if his age 
had allowed him to desire it. It was remarked that on this 
occasion the people did not shout as usual, Vive le roi ! and 
seemed to show a coolness towards him. 

That evening the queen, speaking of all that had hap- 
pened, told us she awaited with impatience what would be 
done on the morrow; which, however, was like the other 
days; parliament called upon its members to assemble, 
which they did tumultuously, grumbling against the king 
for having forbidden them a thing which they maintained 
was their right. But they said no more about the Chamber 
of Saint-Louis, which was the sore point; and the chief 
president, wishing to please the Court a little, kept them 
waiting so long that the hour struck at which they ad- 


journed ; but they did so crying out that they were deter- 
mined to deliberate on the declaration of the king, and if 
they were prevented they would not bear it. 

The minister, to whom all these wrangles were most 
displeasing, had strongly wished that parliament might not 
force the queen to extremities. In spite of her impatient 
feelings, which could not brook that which showed con- 
tempt for royalty, he had restrained her in order to see 
if there were no means of bringing these sullen spirits 
to some agreement. Moderation was the cardinal's fa- 
miliar spirit; he would risk nothing, and always desired 
to avoid by negotiations what might lead to civil war, 
which he dreaded for the State, and still more for his own 
private interests. 

In spite of all his prudence the mischief did not end; 
this self-willed body insisted on assembling, and on August 4 
Monsieur was constrained to go to them again. They spoke 
out boldly before him, declared they were not satisfied, and 
concerned themselves very little about the orders of the 
queen. They declaimed against their head president, who 
had prevented them from opening their session and de- 
liberating as they chose on the king's declaration, and 
Monsieur returned to the queen very ill-satisfied. They 
voted that day to continue to assemble until the Chamber 
of Justice which they demanded was established, and to 
deliberate constantly over the declaration, and also over the 
rest of the propositions made in the Chamber of Saint-Louis. 
They no longer spoke of continuing that Chamber, which 
the queen had forbidden ; but the present one was of the 
same consequence. About all these troubles we did not 
fail to see many councils at the Palais-Koyal, which pro- 
duced nothing efficacious as a remedy and such as the state 
of these disturbances demanded. 


In the midst of these troubles came a little affair of small 
notoriety, which was nevertheless vexatious on account of 
its results. The Due de Beaufort was then living at a 
country-house belonging to his father, the Due de Vendome. 
He gave good feasts to his friends while awaiting with 
impatience till the present wrangles should become suffi- 
ciently strong for him to profit by them ; and when he dis- 
covered that the cardinal had spies about him he boldly 
drove them away. The Due de Vendome had sent one of 
his retainers to Paris to offer to the parliamentarians his 
services and assistance. This man had been arrested by 
order of the queen ; and to increase the vexations of the 
day, a request was brought before the assembly from this 
prisoner while Monsieur was present, requesting to be re- 
leased and examined according to the will of parliament. 
The assembly had already shown signs of intending in future 
to take cognizance of all persons whom the king caused to 
be arrested, as proposed in the Chamber of Saint-Louis, and 
that evening this prisoner was hastily transferred to the 
Bastille in the wood of Vincennes, lest the king should no 
longer be master of his person. 

Monsieur returned to parliament, August 5, to be present 
at the deliberations. 1 As the members saw that they 
would wholly embitter the queen's mind if they did not 
obey her, and their destiny not being as yet ripe for ac- 
complishment, their decision on this day was to obey the 
king, and to concern themselves until the middle of August 
solely with affairs of individuals. They deputed four com- 
missioners to examine the points of the deliberation, intend- 

1 It was at the deliberations of August 4 and 5 that Broussel made the 
propositions which began to alarm the Court. The Due d'Orleans half 
rose as if he would leave the assembly; but the presidents entreated him 
to keep his seat, assuring him that parliament would not fail in its duty. 
(Memoirs of Omer Talon.) FR. ED. 


ing to assemble and deliberate over it again when they 
should see fit. 

Meantime things were as much embroiled in the provinces 
as in Paris ; everywhere could be seen and heard a horrible 
letting loose of curses against the government and an 
unbridled freedom in speaking ill of the minister. Murmurs 
arose against the queen ; she was openly attacked and hated 
on account of the man whose greatness she upheld. In 
their blindness and ignorance truth was stifled ; for, after all, 
the cardinal did not deserve such great hatred, nor did the 
queen deserve blame to the extent to which they gave it. 
She owed her protection to a minister established by legit- 
imate power which she was bound to respect. And as she 
had accepted him of her own choice in the ministry where 
the late king had left him, she felt that she ought to give 
him strength to meet the vexatious events which were likely 
to arise in the course of a long regency. Beholding in her- 
self the source of the authority with which she sought to 
clothe him, she imagined she could easily resume it, and 
that she would not diminish her own power by the share of 
it which she gave him, because it was given only to put 
him in a position to serve her better. 

According to what came of this course, the queen appears 
to have deceived herself; and by it (as I have remarked) 
she drew upon herself the scorn of the people and the 
blame of those who envied the excessive power of the 
minister, which, did, indeed, seem too great. But in think- 
ing herself obliged to maintain him, she had regard primarily 
to the glory of the crown, which seemed diminished by the 
attacks of parliament. The opposition of that body strength- 
ened her in the desire to resist it, and we shall see her 
continue in that course with steady steps which no obstacle 
whatever was able to turn aside. She did not believe that 


the minister was the cause of the revolt; neither did she 
wholly blame his conduct for the misfortunes of her regency, 
although she often thought it weak. His mildness, which 
she supposed to lie at the bottom of it, seemed to her 
praiseworthy ; as a Christian she could not blame in him the 
desire to succeed in satisfying all the various parties who 
opposed his favour; and she saw clearly that, if his sen- 
timents were judged by souls that reasoned, their value 
would be understood. 

She was also too equitable to forget the first placid years 
of her regency, which made the courtiers say they were 
tired of so much happiness ; and although she now knew 
all that the malice of the populace invented against her 
upright intentions and the innocence of her life, the con- 
sciousness she had within herself gave her strength to bear 
all without uneasiness ; moreover, the trust she had in God 
made her hope for His protection. She acted according to 
her feelings and her lights, comprehending that, whatever 
she did, she would never be exempt from the evil inter- 
pretations which are always given to the actions of princes, 
nor from the hatred that the people are wont to feel to 

The queen's piety was at all times remarkable. I know 
from Madame de Senece", her lady-of-honour, who told it to 
me privately, and afterwards in the queen's own presence, 
that when very young and in the days of her greatest beauty, 
as she had not enough money to do all the alms she wished, 
she robbed herself of jewels and chains, pretending she had 
lost them accidentally, in order to give them to the poor. 
She hid this from Madame de Senece", then her lady of the 
bedchamber ; and when she saw her looking for these things 
and troubled, and could not pacify her by merely telling her 
they were lost and that she need not worry herself, she then 


owned she had taken them to give to those she could not 
help in other ways; but she "told this with as much shame 
as if she had done a bad action ; and urgently requested her 
to say nothing about it to any one. 

During her regency her heart must have found some satis- 
faction in the good works that she did throughout France ; 
and even Christians in all parts of the world received some 
portion of her liberality. It happened, nevertheless, that, as 
she did not have the use of the king's treasury, having placed 
it in trust hi the hands of the cardinal in happier times, now, 
when she might have been mistress of all favours, and when 
the minister, the superintendent, and the finance officers were 
profusely using it to their own profit, she was frequently 
in a state of need which did not allow her to do what she 
would have liked to do. She did not pay her debts, and 
never had enough to satisfy her generosity, either in regard 
to the poor or to those about her for whom she had an affec- 
tion. She was persuaded that there was never enough money 
in the treasury ; and though she had about her persons bold 
enough and faithful enough to tell her the contrary, her in- 
difference, which made her neglect too much the knowledge 
of the truth, deprived her of this means of exercising use- 
fully the moral and Christian virtues of which her soul was 
full the only happiness that can render crowns desirable. 

On the day of Notre-Dame, in August, the king went to 
hear vespers at the Feuillants, and the cardinal was with him. 
It is the rule that in any place where the person of the king 
is, the captain of his body-guard is to hold the keys. It is 
also the rule that no other guards than the body-guard shall 
be on duty. A procession was to be made with the king 
through the cloister ; the Marquis de Gesvres, captain of the 
body-guard, was therefore the master of it. Information was 
brought to him that the guards of the grand provost were al- 


ready in that place with one of the provost's lieutenants. 
The Marquis de Gesvres ordered his lieutenant, named de 
L'Isle to go and turn them out. De L'Isle went ; and being 
wise and cautious, he first pointed out that the other guards 
had no right in the place, and ought to leave it, because 
otherwise he had orders to turn them out. The guards an- 
swered insolently that they would not go ; and their anger 
against de L'Isle was so great that he judged it was neces- 
sary to use violence. But, before doing so, he returned to 
his captain for further orders. ' De Gesvres told him to make 
them go in any way he could. De L'Isle returned and, wish- 
ing to obey, he was forced, by the resistance of the provost's 
guard, to take sword in hand. In the scuffle two of the 
guards were maltreated ; one was killed, the other wounded. 
De L'Isle, who was a worthy man, did his best to prevent 
this misfortune, but it was not possible to control the matter, 
for the Suisses seconded the body-guard and together they 
made the uproar. 

It is a crime of lese^najeste to take sword in hand in the 
king's house, or in any place where he is. As the rumour of 
the affair spread, everybody was troubled. Jarze*, friend of 
the grand provost, spoke out against the Marquis de Gesvres, 
taxing him with having been too hasty. Cardinal Mazarin 
was displeased in his soul that the marquis had given these 
orders in his presence without asking his advice as to what 
he ought to do ; nevertheless he did not show it, but con- 
cealed his vexation. The king having returned to the Palais- 
Eoyal, the minister pacified the quarrel between Gesvres and 
Jarze* and sent at once to the queen (who had gone to sleep 
at the Val-de-GrSce for the feast-day) to tell her of the mis- 
adventure. The next morning, in consequence of the Mar- 
quis de Gesvres having caused blood to be shed in presence 
of the king but really because he had not shown due re- 


spect to the cardinal Le Tellier was sent to order him to 
give up his baton and place it in the hands of the Comte de 
Charost, another captain of the body-guard like himself. 

The Comte de Trgmes, father of the Marquis de Gesvres, 
went to the minister and complained to him of the treat- 
ment his son was receiving ; he said he had not failed in 
his duty, but had maintained the rights of his office; and, 
moreover, if he were forced to give it up, the Comte de 
Charost was not the man to take his place, but he himself 
was ; inasmuch as his son only served the king in reversion 
to himself, who was the veritable captain of the Guards, and 
they could only take the baton from him with his head. 
Besides this, he informed the Comte de Charost that he 
would disoblige him if he received the king's order, and 
said that as they all owed support to one another, he begged 
him not to accept the command. 

The cardinal now declared that he had reason to complain 
of the Marquis de Gesvres for having given orders in his 
presence without informing him of them ; and said that be- 
ing prime minister and intrusted with the education of the 
king, de Gesvres had failed in the respect that was due to 
him. Through the resentment he felt to the son he would 
not consider the prayers and the rights of the father, and 
therefore induced the queen to persist in declaring that the 
baton was to be given to the Comte de Charost. She said 
the command was issued, and must be obeyed, although had 
she known- that the Comte de Tremes was in Paris she might 
perhaps have ordered him to take it ; but that now, as he 
had opposed her orders and her will, she should not listen 
to him. She said aloud that she willed that Charost should 
serve, if only for two hours, to show the obedience which 
she declared was her due. 

Beringhen, first equerry, a wise and prudent man, exhorted 


Charost to do as the queen desired, and he resolved to obey. 
The cardinal himself urged him and even prayed him to 
oblige him ; so that Charost promised him to take the baton. 
With this intention he went down to the room of the cap- 
tain of the guards, where was the Comte de Tremes, who 
had taken possession of the baton, declaring that he should 
hold it till the queen came back from the Val-de-Grace and 
he could receive her orders from her own lips. Charost, 
who had just left Cardinal Mazarin, told him he had pledged 
himself to take the baton, and asked him for it. The Comte 
de Tremes answered that he could not give it to him, for his 
honour was concerned in not seeing it in another man's 
hand, while he had committed no wrong that deserved its 

The Comte de Charost, a man of real worth, who approved 
of his colleague's resistance and felt he would have done the 
same in his place, answered that he never wished to take 
the honour from him, that it was only by force he was led 
to accept it, and that now, seeing him determined not to 
give up the baton, it was all right that he should keep it, 
for his own intention was, as far as in him lay, to do harm 
to no man. Charost then, not venturing to see the cardinal 
again, went off to his own house, preferring to let him hear 
of the matter from others than himself. 

The queen had heard at the Val-de-Grace that Charost 
had resolved to serve, and the rest of the day passed without 
either her or the cardinal knowing aught to the contrary. 
That evening, on her return, the king having run some dis- 
tance to meet and embrace her, she noticed that the captain 
of the Guards was not with him, and asked the reason. 
They told her that the Comte de Trgmes would not allow 
Charost to serve as he intended, and that, seeing this re- 
sistance, the latter had not liked to oppose it and had gone 


home. The queen, seized with a little rush of anger, and 
touched with keen resentment at the general state of her 
affairs, which this piece of boldness recalled to her mind, 
exclaimed aloud : " Ho ! God be thanked, I have reached 
the point where every one makes it an honour to disobey 
me ! " meaning by those words both the parliament and 
the people of the Court. 

The cardinal came to her at once, and she soon after 
ordered to be brought before her the four captains of the 
guards (except Villequier, who was not in Paris), namely : 
the Comte de Tremes, the Comte de Charost, and the Mar- 
quis de Chandenier, 1 the Marquis de Gesvres being in 
reversion to his father, and the only culpable one, did not 
appear. She gave them a reprimand on their disobedience, 
which at first was rather gentle, wishing by such treatment 
to make them repent of their fault. But when they wished 
to present their reasons and showed that they intended to 
support one another, she was angry and turned them out of 
her cabinet, telling them that she wished never to see them 
again, and would find others who would obey her better. 

The whole Court was now divided on the affair. Some 
approved of the queen's course at a time when her authority 
was only too much disregarded ; others disapproved of it, 
saying that she had not shown sufficient regard to the 
rights of the Comte de Tremes ; and the latter were possibly 
right. Now the queen, of her own inclination, would doubt- 
less not in any way have resisted granting him the baton, 
if she had not been led to do so by the cardinal's passion. 
Continuing, however, to sacrifice to him her own kind feel- 

1 Madame de Motteville has forgotten to say that as soon as the Mar- 
quis de Gesvres received orders to give up the baton, the cardinal sent for 
Chandenier and offered it to him ; but he refused it out of delicacy. See 
Memoirs of Montglat. FR. ED. 
VOL. i. 20 


ings, she ordered that Chandenier be brought before her, a 
last unfortunate remains of the " Importants," whom she 
had considered and treated as one of her most faithful ser- 
vants. He remained at Court only by enforced tolerance on 
the part of the minister; consequently he was chosen by 
him on this occasion to be the victim of his policy. 

The resolution was already taken to exile Charost. They 
wished to punish him for the compliance he had shown to 
the Comte de Tremes, and give an example of severity which 
should pass from the Court to the parliament. He had some 
original sin in regard to the false divinity adored at the 
Court, which rendered him suspected by the minister. He 
was brother of the Comte de Be*thune, great abettor of the 
" Importants " and friend of the Due de Beaufort, who was 
beginning to live again after his escape from prison, and to 
give back some lustre to the annihilated cabal. 

Chandenier was in worse case still; the minister had 
great reason to hate him, for, besides what I have just told, 
he was found at the beginning of the regency to be a rela- 
tive of Des Noyers, Cardinal Mazarin's enemy, who, in the 
days of the late king, had driven the minister from Court. 
Chandenier, having therefore no protection but that the 
queen owed to his goodness, confided himself to her; and 
as soon as he saw the cardinal in a position to make himself 
feared, he entreated her to take pains herself to put him in 
the good graces of one she had raised to the power of pre- 
serving or destroying. She meant to do this ; but, whether 
she did it feebly, or whether the minister could not endure 
a semi-favourite, it happened at last that Chandenier was 
dismissed from Court instead of being well-treated. 

As he knew he must find help in other ways, he got friends 
to speak to the cardinal for him, and by that means he re- 
turned to Court. He stayed but a short time, for the min- 


ister felt that he hated him. Chandenier was deficient in 
the behaviour necessary to preserve a good-will which, being 
feebly given, required great care to strengthen it ; and the 
native distrust of the minister could at last no longer endure 
a man whom he had no reason to love and had sufficiently 
ill-treated to fear. However that may be, it is certain that 
never did he show him any further good-will, and Chande- 
nier stayed on at Court, kindly treated by the queen, but 
ill-satisfied with her minister, and little considered ; for he 
was not thought able, although esteemed as a man of hon- 
our and integrity, blamable only in being somewhat ostenta- 
tious about it. 

The solid virtue that a man should have is opposed to dis- 
play and notoriety, and he who possesses it, if he wishes to 
receive true praise, should not ask for praise. As such per- 
sons are usually too impatient of the faults of others, he had 
often blamed those of the minister ; and when it was known 
that the queen had sent for him, no one doubted that, having 
joined with his colleagues in refusing to serve, his revolt 
would be made a pretext by the minister to get rid of him. 
He was a friend of mine, and I did what I could to make 
him think carefully of his answer to the queen before he 
appeared before her, because on that moment his future 
depended. But, knowing the engagement he had taken, 
which bound him to great fidelity to the interests of his 
colleagues, he having owned to me that he had himself 
advised their resistance, I was reduced with his other 
friends to pity him and hope he might still come safely out 
of the affair, without being able to divine in what manner 
he could save himself from the danger. 

He went before the queen; and to tell the truth, he 
appeared with a very tranquil countenance. When she 
saw him she said that, having always believed he put more 


affection into his service than many others, she had also 
supposed him the most ready to obey her ; for that reason 
she had sent for him ; that the king was left without ser- 
vice ; and that she desired him to take that duty as a proof 
of his fidelity. He answered that he very humbly begged 
her to consider his engagement towards his comrades ; that 
if he obeyed her commands he should declare them guilty, 
and thereby become himself the most infamous of men; 
that he had reason to complain, because, being and al- 
ways having been her faithful servant, she had chosen him 
on this occasion to order him to do a thing by which he 
should lose his reputation if he obeyed her. On which the 
queen, who did not wish to ruin him, offered, to satisfy this 
chimera of honour, to command him openly and before all 
the Court to obey. But, seeing that he still persisted in 
refusing, she raised her voice before us who were present 
at the conversation, and said quite sternly, " Enough, Chan- 
denier, enough ! " He retired ; and the next day an order 
was sent to him and to Charost to retire from Court, and go 
to their country-houses. The same order was sent to the 
Comte de Tremes, and their offices were given to others. 
That of the Comte de Charost was given to Jarze*. The lat- 
ter had birth and stood well at Court ; but his mind was 
more brilliant than prudent, and its frivolity in many pas- 
sages of his life will show how necessary wisdom is to man. 
He took the oath from the hands of the queen, and a prom- 
ise was given to the Comte de Charost to reimburse him for 
his office. 

The next day the same treatment was given to Chande- 
nier, 1 but, no doubt, it was intended by the minister to be 
quite other than that of Charost. His office was given to 

1 The pathetic close of his life and history is told in Saint-Simon's 
Memoirs. Tr. 


the Comte de Noailles, who had already deprived him of 
much property, having, by the help of Cardinal Mazarin, 
married Mademoiselle Boyer, a rich young woman whom 
Chandenier was seeking. De Noailles took his oath of 
fidelity; and, as some persons are born for the misery 
of others, he kept his office much longer than Jarze* kept 
that of Charost. 

Thus in one day we saw driven from the king's house- 
hold three of his most important officers, without the 
cardinal appearing to have any part in it, the queen taking 
upon herself all the odium of this action to save her minister. 
It seemed that these captains of the Guard ought to have 
obeyed the king, and that they were wrong to so obstinately 
oppose his sovereign will illor", after all, it is right that our 
masters be obeyed, even in matters in which they may not 
have reason on their side. In vain would they be called 
by the great names of monarch, king, all-powerful, if their 
subjects could resist them on the slightest occasion.^ But it 
is just and right that these very kings should enter into 
the interests of individuals, hear their reasons, and take 
care to satisfy them, when they respectfully ask to be 
treated with equity. 

The queen never of herself failed to follow these noble 
precepts ; such virtues are the ones which appeared in her 
with the greatest glow, and drew to her the admiration of the 
public. Her ears were never weary of listening to the plaints 
of the unfortunate ; her heart received without repugnance 
the importunities made to her by those who suffered oppres- 
sion. She was incessantly exposed to this through her 
kindness and humanity ; and her will, always disposed to 
right action, never refused to do justice to those who asked 
it of her. But on this occasion, when the corruption of the 
air about her made her more sensitive to disobedience, she 


could not endure this instance of it; and all the more 
because the cardinal's private animosity was hidden from 
her by a veil of policy. For this reason she contributed, 
without any design, to the misfortune of her old servant, 
Chandenier, and abandoned him to the resentment of her 

After the festival was over, parliament once more began 
to deliberate on the king's declaration. They examined it 
article by article. On some they voted remonstrances, on 
others they gave decrees. They complained that it was 
captious, declared that it only half favoured them, and 
then with bad intentions. Their chief complaint was about 
the article on the taille, which they maintained was not 
explained, and they demanded on behalf of the people that 
the quarter granted by the king should be exempted from 

August 20, Monsieur having gone to parliament, the dis- 
cussion ended by asking him for a conference at the Luxem- 
bourg. It took place on the 21st with the same good 
success as before, and Monsieur on his return told the queen 
that all was going well; they had regulated the tariff on 
the number of taxes which parliament consented should be 
levied ; which number was to be posted in the streets that 
the people might not be deceived or forced to pay more 
than they ought. Nevertheless, parliament did not put an 
end to its assemblings ; so that, in point of fact, it scoffed 
at the king's order, at the authority of the queen, and at 
that of him who governed the State ; whose strength was 
beginning to diminish as that of parliament increased. 

On the same day an uncertain rumour came to give joy 
to the queen, for, if true, it would cure all her troubles, or 
at least give her comfort for a period of time. A man 
arrived from Arras with the assurance that a battle had 


been fought and cannon had been heard. No one, he said, 
had returned, a proof that the battle had been won, because 
no fugitives had appeared on the frontier; apparently they 
were all busy in pursuing and despoiling the enemy. 

The queen spent the whole day in great impatience to 
know what had happened, and at midnight, as she was 
undressing to go to bed, the Comte de Ch&tillon arrived, 
sent by the Prince de Cond immediately after the battle 
[of Lens]. We heard afterwards that this noble courier had 
done wonders that were worthy of himself and his race. 
He assured the queen of her good fortune, and told her that 
all she could have hoped for had happened ; that victory 
remained with the French, after wringing it from the enemy 
at the cost of lives and blood ; cannon were taken ; General 
Beck and his son were prisoners, also the Prince de Ligne, 
and the Comte de Saint-Amour, general of artillery; three 
thousand dead were on the field, besides an incredible num- 
ber of wounded, and five thousand prisoners were taken. 

This battle had been desired by both sides. The arch- 
duke had orders from the King of Spain to give it at any 
price; the king believing, with reason, that if he won it, 
France, in the state in which she then was, would fall a 
prey to his ambition. For this purpose the archduke had 
sent all his baggage into Flanders ; and the Prince de 
Conde*, on his side, had done the same; these two great 
princes having the same intention, namely, to fight to the 
death. Both therefore did great deeds. The Prince de 
Conde', as usual, was everywhere. The Comte de Chatillon 
related to the queen how, for all speech to his soldiers, the 
prince had said : " My friends, have good courage. We 
must fight to-day ; it is useless to hold back ; for I tell 
you, brave men and cowards, all shall fight, willingly or by 
force." The preceding evening he gave an order to the 


whole army to watch their marching, in order that the 
cavalry and infantry should advance on the same line, care- 
fully keeping their distances and intervals ; and to charge 
at a walk [au pas] only, and let the enemy fire first. 

Our army had then only 14,000 men, that of the enemy 
15,000 or 16,000. The Prince de Conde asked for a marshal's 
baton for the Comte de Chatillon. But this was refused 
on account of the number of applicants, who embarrassed 
the minister. 

The king, hearing that a battle had been won, cried out 
with a great exclamation that parliament would be very 
sorry for the news. He had heard so much said of that 
body being his enemies that he immediately came to this 
conclusion. Their proceedings, differing from their inten- 
tions, which I desire to think more innocent in fact than 
in appearance, deserved that the king should think them 
traitors ; for they had brought France to such a state that 
had the battle gone against us, the monarchy might have 
seen its end, through causes which, in their beginning, 
seemed of little consequence. 

After the first emotions which this victory caused in the 
soul of the queen, her reason and her kind nature made her 
wish for peace, and policy played its usual game. She 
knew that her minister was blamed for not making it ; for 
this reason she affected to say pointedly before the whole 
Court that after this battle she hoped that Spain would wish 
for peace, for if it did she believed it would indubitably 



THE queen, wishing to have the Te Deum chanted at 
Notre-Dame, to render thanks to God for the great victory, 
and to carry to the church the banners conquered from the 
enemy, 1 wished also to use this day of triumph to bring 
some remedy to the rebellion of parliament and to punish 
it for its last disobedience, which had seemed, in the eyes 
of every one, to hide a criminal audacity under a false 
appearance of fidelity. 

To do this, in full agreement with the Due d'Orldans 
and her minister, she commanded Comminges, lieutenant 
of her guards, to arrest President Blancmesnil, President 
Charton, and, above all, a man named Broussel, counsellor 
of parliament, who had constantly raised the standard 
against the king and opened all discussions that tended to 
destroy the royal authority ; he had made himself the 
mouthpiece of the people, showing on every occasion the 
spirit of a man born in a republic, and affecting the sen- 
timents of a veritable Eoman. This day was chosen by 
advice of the cardinal, because the ceremony of the Te 
Deum gave occasion to put the whole regiment of the 
guards under arms ; it being usual to line the king's way 
and the neighbourhood of Notre-Dame, where Broussel 
lodged. As there was some reason to fear that the populace 

1 These flags to the number of sixty-three, were borne to the choir by 
the Suisse guard. The members of parliament were present in great 
numbers at the ceremony, to remove all suspicion that this victory was 
not agreeable to them (Omer Talon). FR. ED. 


would rise in his defence, it was necessary to have a certain 
amount of force ready against that canaille, and thus 
prevent it from gathering sufficient strength to resist the 
name of the king and the glory of the successful victory. 

The queen, having given her orders to Comminges, he 
gave his for the execution of the enterprise confided to him. 
He sent two of his lieutenants, as he told me himself with 
every particular, one to President Blancmesnil, the other 
to President Charton, reserving for himself the most dan- 
gerous affair, that of seizing Broussel, the friend and protector 
of the people. 

The queen, after the Te Deum, and after committing this 
matter to the Sovereign of sovereigns as a severity forced 
upon her and necessary for public tranquillity, left the 
church, saying in a low voice to Comminges, " Go, and may 
God assist you ; " well content with herself, as she told us 
afterwards, in being able to hope that she should be avenged 
on those who had despised her authority and that of the 
king her son. 

Le Tellier, secretary of State, also said to Comminges at 
the same time that he could go, for all was ready ; meaning 
that the three men were in their homes. Comminges 
waited a short time at Notre-Dame with a few guards until 
he knew that an order he had given was executed. As it is 
usual for the officers of the body-guard never to leave the 
person of the king, notice was immediately given to some 
of the parliament who were still in the church that the 
lieutenant of the queen's guards had remained there, which 
seemed to threaten the liberty of some of the individuals 
of then- assembly. On receiving this warning they all 
took to flight, and the church, to their thinking, had not 
doors enough to let them get out as fast as they wished. 
The populace who filled the space about the church, having 


come there to see the king pass, hearing this rumour, 
collected in groups, and began to watch and listen for what 
it might mean. 

Comminges had sent his carriage with four of his guards 
and one lieutenant to the end of Broussel's street, which 
was short and narrow, with orders to the officer as soon as 
he saw him, Comminges, approach the house on foot, to 
bring the carriage to the door, with the curtains raised and 
the steps lowered. This he ordered, so he told me, that in 
case he was attacked in the carriage with his prisoner, he 
might see all around him and give his orders. Accordingly 
he went to the house on foot and knocked at the door. A 
little foot-boy opened it without delay; he seized the 
entrance, and leaving two guards there he went up to Brous- 
sel's apartment with the two others. He found him just 
finishing dinner, with his family around him. Comminges 
told him he brought an order from the king to seize his 
person ; but, if he wished to spare himself the trouble of 
reading the lettre de cachet, which he showed him, he had 
only to follow and obey him. 

This man, over sixty years old, was alarmed, in spite of 
the courage he had shown in parliament, at hearing the king 
named in this way, and showed that the visit distressed 
him greatly. He replied that he was not in a state to obey, 
having taken medicine that morning, and he asked for time. 
An old woman of the house began to scream to the neigh- 
bours that her master was being carried off, begging them 
for succour, and telling Comminges with a thousand insults 
that he should not be obeyed, that she would prevent him 
from doing harm to her master. At the woman's noise, the 
populace collected in the little street ; the first who ran up 
called to others, and in a moment the street was filled with 
canaille. When they saw the carriage full of arms and 


men, they began to shout that their liberator was being 
carried off. Some wished to cut the horses' reins, others to 
break the carriage; but the guards and a little page of 
Comminges defended it valiantly, threatening to kill all 
those who attacked it. 

Comminges, hearing within the house the noise of the 
populace, and seeing the riot which might happen if he 
delayed any longer in his purpose, seized Broussel by force 
and threatened to kill him if he refused to walk. He 
dragged him from the house and the embraces of his family, 
and flung him into the carriage whether he would or not; 
the guards going before to push back the people, who threat- 
ened to attack them. At the sound of this uproar chains 
were fastened across the streets, and at the first turn Corn- 
minges found his way stopped ; so that, in order to escape, 
he had to have the carriage turned round often, and gave a 
sort of battle to the populace, whose numbers increased the 
farther he advanced on his way. 

He arrived at last opposite to the house of the chief- 
president, where his carriage was upset and broken. He 
would have been lost if at this very place he had not found 
soldiers of a regiment of Guards, who still lined the street 
with orders to render him assistance if needed. He had 
sprung with his prisoner from the overturned carriage, and 
seeing himself surrounded by enemies who wanted to tear 
him in pieces, and having only three or four of his own 
guards, who were not enough to save him, he called out, 
" To arms, comrades ! to the rescue ! " The soldiers, faith- 
ful to the king at all times of the regency, surrounded him 
and gave him the necessary assistance. 

The populace also surrounded him, with very different 
intentions; and there ensued a combat of fists and insults 
not less dangerous to the State than those of guns and 


blades. Comminges remained in this position until one of 
his guards brought up another carriage, which he had taken 
from some passers, turning the ladies out with threats, and, 
in spite of their remonstrances, compelling the coachman 
to serve the occasion. This carriage also was broken at the 
corner of the rue Saint-Honors', and these various accidents 
made known this action of the government to the whole city 
of Paris, and stirred to compassion a vast number of persons 
who thereupon fomented sedition. 

Finally another carriage arrived, which Guitaut, uncle of 
Comminges and captain of the queen's guard, sent to meet 
his nephew, foreseeing that he might need it. It came most 
luckily ; he jumped into it, his prisoner with him, and 
reached a relay which was waiting for him near the Tuile- 
ries, where Mademoiselle was then lodged. This relay took 
him to the chateau de Madrid, thence to Saint-Germain, 
according to his orders from the queen. She intended to 
have Broussel taken from there by a sub-lieutenant to the 
place where she had determined to send him, which was, I 
think, Sedan. 

When the Parisians lost sight of their Broussel they were 
like madmen, shouting through the streets that they were 
lost, that they would have their protector restored to them, 
that they would die, every one of them, cheerfully in his 
behalf. They assembled, they stretched chains across the 
streets, and in a few hours they erected barricades in every 
quarter of the town. 1 The queen, informed of this disturb- 
ance, sent Mare'chal de La Meilleraye through the streets to 
pacify the people and speak to them of their duty. 

The Coadjutor of Paris [Jean-FranQois-Paul de Gondi, 
afterwards Cardinal de Ketz], who, from inordinate ambition, 

1 Omer Talon says that twelve hundred and sixty barricades were 
counted in Paris. FR. ED. 


had inclinations that were far from wishing to endeavour to 
remedy these evils, was also sent. But, wishing to conceal 
the tendency of his mind, which was to desire a change, 
he went out on foot with his hood and rochet ; and mingling 
with the crowd he reproved the people, shouted peace to 
them, and pointed out the obedience they owed to the king, 
with every sign of disinterested affection for his service. 
Perhaps he may even have acted in good faith on this occa- 
sion, for, as his sole desire was to play a part in great affairs 
by any or every means that offered, if in this way he could 
enter the good graces of the queen and make himself neces- 
sary to the State, his ambition being satisfied he would have 
taken no other course. 

The populace replied to what he said to them with respect 
for his person, but with audacity and anger against the idea 
of what they owed to the king. They demanded their pro- 
tector, with protestations that they would never be pacified 
until he was returned to them ; 1 and without considering the 
respect they owed to the Grand-Master, the Mare'chal de La 
Meilleraye, they flung stones at him, overwhelmed him with 
insults, and, in threatening him, uttered horrible imprecations 
against the queen and her minister. Against the latter they 
launched such insolence as deserved the gibbet if the king 
had been master, or if the queen had been capable from pri- 
vate vengeance of putting any one to death. 

The two men returned to the Palais-Royal to consult as 
to what should be done at this crisis, when words seemed 
too feeble a remedy for so great an evil. But, as it was 
thought best not to embitter the people still further in their 
first heat, they were sent back to expose themselves once 

1 Broussel was an old army officer, sixty-three years of age, popular for 
his benefits, and for his zeal against the new taxes. In the Chamber of 
Saint-Louis, he had played the role and taken the attitude of a party leader 
(Omer Talon). FB. ED. 


more to stones and insults. They went with a good grace, 
although the Mare'chal de La Meilleraye had the gout and 
could walk only by the aid of a stick, and the health of the 
coadjutor was feeble. Soldiers were also sent, to see if a 
show of arms would not frighten the furious groups. But 
after a few blows which dispersed them for a moment, their 
anger increased and their rage became more violent. This 
medicine, given only from necessity, to try if an appearance 
of force would not cure the evil, not having any such effect, 
they ceased to administer it; it was thought that the best 
plan would be to do nothing extraordinary, for fear of letting 
the Parisians know the danger to which their folly was ex- 
posing France. 

All this day was spent in hoping that the tumult would 
subside, but with many a fear that it might increase. The 
council was held at the Palais-Eoyal as usual ; and we all 
sat peacefully laughing and talking, as usual, of a thousand 
frivolities. For, besides the fact that no one on such occa- 
sions likes to say what he is thinking of, or to appear to be 
afraid, none of us wished to be the first to prognosticate evil. 
Many persons, in fact, came to see the queen, and told her, 
with levity and on false assumptions, that the affair was 
nothing and that matters would soon be pacified. Kings 
natter themselves readily ; our regent did so, and being born 
with intrepid courage, she ridiculed the emotions of the 
populace and could not believe they would ever do her any 
serious harm. 

That evening, the coadjutor [ecclesiastic who aids a bishop 
or archbishop in his functions and succeeds him] returned to 
see the queen on behalf of the people, being forced to accept 
their commission to ask again for the release of Broussel, 
they being resolved, they said, if this request were refused, 
to recover him by force. As the queen's heart was not sus- 


ceptible of weakness, and she possessed a courage that 
might shame the most valiant, and as moreover the cardinal 
did not find it to his advantage to be always defeated, she 
scorned the proposal, and the coadjutor returned to the 
people without an answer. One of his friends (slightly one 
of mine), Laigues, who perhaps, like himself, was not, in the 
depths of his soul, in despair at the bad position of the Court 
and who had never quitted him all day, whispered in my 
ear that all was lost ; that we must not amuse ourselves by 
thinking the affair was nothing ; that there was everything 
to fear from the insolence of the people ; that already the 
streets were filled with outcries against the queen, and that 
he did not believe the matter could be easily pacified. 

The night that followed dispersed the crowds and con- 
firmed the queen in her belief that there was nothing to fear 
from the tumult of the day before. She turned the thing 
into a joke, and asked me, as she left the council and came 
to undress, if I had not been in a great fright. She was 
continually making war upon my cowardice; and she did 
me the honour to tell me gaily that when at midday, just 
after her return from the Te Deum, they came to tell her of 
the uproar the people were beginning to make, she had in- 
stantly thought of me and of the fright I should have on 
hearing the terrible news and those big words " stretched 
chains " and " barricades." 

She guessed rightly, for I thought I should die with the 
shock when they told me that the populace were up in 
arms ; never supposing that in this Paris, the abode of pleas- 
ures and delight, war and barricades could exist except in the 
history and life of Henri III. The queen's jest lasted the 
whole evening ; and as I was certainly the least valiant of 
the company the whole shame of that day fell upon me. 
I laughed myself, not only at my own terror, but also at 


the advice Laigues had so charitably given me a few hours 
earlier. It was not without wondering at how differently 
things can be viewed, according to the diverse passions and 
desires of men. 

The same day the chief president came, on hearing of the 
banishment of his colleagues, to ask the queen for their re- 
lease; but she sent him away without an answer. The 
people, who suspected him of being in collusion with the 
Court, went to his house ; rascals full of fury shouted that 
he was a traitor and had sold his colleagues. He was com- 
pelled, in order to pacify them, to go out into the streets on 
foot to address the rioters and justify himself to them. Had 
he not done this firmly, they might perhaps have gone still 
further in their insolence ; but his gentleness calmed their 
fury, and they received his justification on condition that he 
returned to the queen and demanded Broussel. This he did, 
with as little success as before. 

The next day, as resolved in the council of the preceding 
day, the chancellor, Sdguier, had orders to go to the Palais 
de Justice and preside there, so as to calm the minds of the 
members and prevent any disturbance which might arise on 
pretext of this affair. 1 The sedition had terrified every one, 
and the friends of the chancellor told him that this occasion 
seemed to them very perilous for him. He saw the danger 
to which he was exposed with the same eyes as theirs ; but 
his soul, too attached to favour, was not as much attached to 
love of life. He preferred the advantage of doing an action 
which was out of the common ; and as the queen thought it 
a necessary one, he wished to perform it without giving any 
sign of weakness. 

1 It was thought also that he was to forbid parliament ; but I have no 
certain knowledge of this. I saw at the time no sign of it, and I did not 
hear of it until long after. (Author'^ note.) 

VOL. I. 21 


He started at five in the morning and went to the Palais, 
or rather, he left his house with the intention of doing so. 
The Bishop of Meaux, his brother, insisted on going with 
him, and his daughter, the Duchesse de Sully, young, beauti- 
ful, and brave, sprang into his carriage in spite of what he 
did to prevent her. When he was on the Pont-Neuf, three 
or four tall scoundrels came up to the carriage and insolently 
demanded that the prisoner be given up to them ; telling 
him that if this were not done instantly they would kill 
him. These desperate fellows having begun the tumult, 
others came up and surrounded him, threatening the same 

He, not knowing how to escape peacefully from this 
canaille, ordered his coachman to drive on, and go towards 
the Augustins, where the house of his friend the Due de 
Luynes stood, intending, if compelled by the crowd, to enter 
the courtyard, or else, for greater safety, to go by the Pont 
Notre-Dame to the Palais ; for he thought that the worthy 
burghers would not let him be maltreated by these rioters. 
When he arrived at the Augustins, the crowd had begun 
to scatter; so that he resolved to leave his carriage at 
the Due de Luynes, and go on foot to the Palais. But he 
had hardly taken three steps when a tall ruffian, dressed 
in gray, came up shouting : " To arms ! to arms ! Let us 
kill him, and avenge upon him the evils from which we 
suffer ! " 

On this the tumult grew hotter and hotter; and the 
chancellor was forced to take refuge in the hotel de Luynes 
in order to save his life. He was received by a good old 
woman who, seeing the chancellor asking for help, took him 
by the hand and led him to a little closet made of pine 
boards at the end of a hall. He had no sooner entered, he 
and his party, than the canaille arrived with furious shouts, 


demanding to know where he was, and declaring, with many 
oaths, that they meant to have him. Some said : " Prisoner 
for prisoner ; we will exchange him for our dear protector." 
Others, more malignant, said he ought to be killed and quar- 
tered, and the pieces hung in the public squares to show 
their resentment by their vengeance. They came at last to 
the little closet in search of him, but as the place looked de- 
serted they contented themselves with giving a few kicks 
against the planks and listening if they could hear any 
sound ; after which they went to seek him elsewhere. It is 
to be supposed that the chancellor while this was going on 
was not at his ease, and that he felt himself human. While 
in that closet he confessed to his brother, the Bishop of 
Meaux, and prepared himself to die. 

He had sent to the Palais-Royal for help, and as soon as 
the peril he was in was known the gendarmes and the 
light-horse were sent to his assistance. The Mare*chal de La 
Meilleraye started to find him with two companies of Swiss 
guards; and the illustrious prisoner was saved at last by 
the coming of the grand-master. The latter took him by 
the arm to lead him to the Palais-Royal, for in the confusion 
the carriage could not be found, and all things were now 
safe except for exposure to the fury of the populace. The 
Comte d'Offremont also came to the chancellor's aid, and, 
meeting him on the way, he put him into his carriage with 
his daughter and the Bishop of Meaux. As they passed 
before the Place Dauphine in the middle of the Pont Neuf, 
the populace, angry at having lost their prey, fired upon him, 
killing several of the soldiers who surrounded the carriage. 
The Duchesse de Sully received a shot in the arm, from a 
ball that was nearly spent, having been fired from a dis- 
tance; consequently the wound was only a bad contusion. 
One of the king's lieutenants, who was in the suite of the 


chancellor, was killed by this canaille, and so was one of the 

They arrived at the Palais-Royal, much alarmed by their 
adventure; and the chancellor stayed there several days, 
not daring to return home lest the angry populace should 
attack and pillage his house. After he returned there I 
went to see him in his chamber, and he told me himself of 
the state of mind in which he was during this affair ; and 
when I asked him whether the image of death was not 
horrible to him, he told me he had suffered that which, 
according to humanity, no one is exempt from f eeling, but 
that God had shown him great favour, having entirely filled 
his mind with the care of his salvation and in asking from 
Him the forgiveness of his sins. 

Thus passed the morning of the second day, which was 
no better than the first. At the queen's waking, about 
nine o'clock, the news was told to her. She was infinitely 
angered; not only at the treatment given to a person of 
such quality, who, for her service, had been two hours in 
the hands of scoundrels deserving of a rope, but also because 
of the affront to her authority, which would certainly have 
dangerous consequences to the State, and produce bad effects 
through the noise it would make in foreign countries. She 
knew the latter would recover strength from this news. A 
chancellor of France, without respect in Paris, threatened 
with death in the streets, his king being present in the 
city, was a sure sign that the royal power was diminishing 
and the love of the subjects to their sovereign extinct. 

After the queen had received this blow, which showed 
her, in spite of her firmness in not allowing herself to be 
shaken by anything, that she had everything to fear, she 
was forced to rise and receive the parliament, which came 
on foot to demand the release of the prisoner. She spoke 


to them vigorously, with good sense and without anger, for 
on this occasion she acted according to her own feelings 
and of her own monition. Among other things that she 
said, these words remained in my memory and seemed to 
me worthy of remark : That it was strange and very 
shameful for them to have seen, in the days of the late 
queen her mother-in-law, the Prince de Conde' in the 
Bastille without making any remonstrance; but that now, 
for a man like Broussel, they and the people made many ; 
that posterity would regard with horror the cause of such 
disturbances, and that the king, her son, would some day be 
able to complain of their proceedings and punish them. 

The chief-president said little, and President de Mesmes, 
interrupting him, took speech and addressing the queen, 
said : " Shall I dare, Madame, to tell you that, in the state 
in which the people are, a remedy must alone be thought 
of ; and that your Majesty ought, it seems to me, to avoid 
the pain of having the prisoner set free by force, by granting 
his freedom to us of your own will and with a good grace ? " 
The queen replied that it was impossible to do that wrong 
to the royal authority, and to leave unpunished a man who 
had attacked it with such insolence ; that parliament ought 
to see by the mildness of her regency what her intentions 
were; that, for herself, she was always disposed to pardon 
them ; but they knew very well that kings were com- 
pelled to a certain severity, in order to control the people 
by some fear. 

After this sort of dispute she left them, and the head- 
president, running after her, conjured her to think well 
what she was doing. To which the queen (instructed here 
by her minister, as she admitted afterwards) replied that 
on their side they had better do what they ought, and 
show in the future more respect for the king's will; and 


when they did that, she, on her side, would do them all the 
favours they could justly claim from her. 

The chancellor, who was present, explained that this 
answer was meant to let them know that if they would 
promise not to discuss the king's declaration any longer, and 
cease absolutely from assembling to discuss the affairs of 
the State, she would release the prisoners; inasmuch as 
the only reason which had obliged the queen to act as she 
had done was their rebellion, and the censure they gave 
daily to that declaration which crowned them with favours 
and showed them plainly the kindness of the king and of 
his minister. 

On this proposition the members decided to return to the 
Palais and assemble to discuss their answer. - They went 
out from the queen -in the same order in which they came, 
and when they reached the rue Saint-Honore* the populace 
stopped them at the first barricade and surrounded them, 
shouting a demand for Broussel. Several approached the 
chief-president and putting a pistol to his throat, insulted 
him and threatened that if he did not cause M. de Broussel 
to be returned to them they would kill him. They showed, 
in fact, a strong desire to maltreat him ; but he escaped by 
his own steady firmness ; assuring them he intended to 
work for that result with all his strength; and on those 
words they gave him his life with the condition that he 
should go back at once to the queen, and signify to her 
that if he did not obtain Broussel they would cut him into 
a thousand pieces. 

The whole assembly, therefore, returned upon its steps, 
much astonished to find the anger of the people turned upon 
them. They knew themselves to be the cause of these dis- 
turbances, and yet they could not remedy them had they 
wished to undertake it ; for when the people meddle with 


the work of commanding, there is no master ; each man for 
himself wants to rule. The famous republic of Eome, which 
made itself the mistress of nearly the whole world, learned 
by experience how dangerous it is to let the people have 
part in the government ; and that illustrious, all-conquering 
community, in which each citizen counted himself a king, 
no doubt felt, through its noble illusion, the love of liberty, 
how hard and cruel and grievous a thing is popular fury. 

France, which is accustomed to a beautiful and honour- 
able duty to sovereigns, regarded the power that the people 
were trying to seize in Paris as a great malady in the State ; 
even parliament was startled. I entered the king's room 
shortly after the return of the long robes to the Palais- 
Eoyal, and I saw them pass from the queen's large cabinet 
over the terrace which separates the two mam buildings of 
this palace, on their way to the grand gallery of the king, 
where they were to do what they had proposed to do at the 
Palais de Justice, namely : seek for means to remedy the 
evil. They had eaten nothing all day, and it was now late. 
Out of pity, rather than kindness, the queen had taken care 
to send them bread and wine with a few dishes, which, as 
I thought, they ought to eat with shame, seeing that they 
were the cause of these disturbances, of the anxieties of the 
queen, the capture of Broussel, and the revolt of the people. 

After their repast, the Due d'0rle*ans went to them to 
take his usual place. The chancellor was also there to pre- 
side ; which he did with great presence of mind, although 
the images of death and danger which he had so recently 
escaped pursued him. The cardinal went in for a moment ; 
intending to conjure them to think seriously, with sincere 
intentions, on the remedy for evils that might grow out of 
these beginnings of rebellion. He had much cleverness of 
mind, and spoke our language fairly well, and he wrote it in 


a way to be admired ; but as the accent of his own country 
stayed by him, he had no charm of speech, nor any facility 
to express himself elegantly. He merely told them that he 
thought they had good intentions, and the queen thought the 
same ; and that being so, it was easy to agree. One of my 
friends who was in the assembly told me he repeated these 
few words over and over again, confusedly ; so that his little 
harangue only made those laugh who did not seriously think 
of doing as he advised. Which ought to make us see that 
the heart of man is naturally perverse, and that justice is 
often banished from it. If it were not so, men would value 
things that are reasonably said, from whatever lips they 

All this day, in spite of the barricades, many persons 
visited the queen, who remained in the circle with the 
Queen of England and several princesses, awaiting the de- 
cision of parliament. The cardinal was not without anxiety, 
and during this period of waiting he shut himself up in the 
queen's little cabinet with the Abb de La Eiviere, who was 
not as troubled as he, for he hoped that the decline of the 
minister might lead to his own elevation. 

This anxiety did not appear on the cardinal's face. On 
the contrary, when he showed himself in public he assumed 
great tranquillity, and, as I have said elsewhere, he was more 
humane and gentle in misfortune than in prosperity ; he did 
not fly from those who wished to speak to him with the same 
harshness as when he was satisfied and content. For this 
reason, the Court people always wished him some ill-luck 
in order to humble him ; for it is natural to men to rule 
their feelings by their interests, and the most virtuous man 
is not virtuous when he desires some benefit which is re- 
fused to him with every mark of contempt and rudeness. 
In spite of the cardinal's apparent gentleness, he did not 


often show that quality in his behaviour or in his words, 
which were nearly always harsh, and very different from his 
promises, which were never fulfilled, or seldom, unless he 
was compelled by the manoeuvres of claimants. They 
nearly always wrung his benefits from his weakness, not 
his kindness. 

Parliament, having ended its deliberations, came to see 
the queen, who went to receive it in her little gallery, tak- 
ing no women with her. The chief-president, in the name 
of the Assembly, protested their fidelity in a rather brief 
compliment, and then rendered to the queen an account of 
their proceedings, in which they promised to postpone all 
further deliberations, except those on finance and tariff, until 
after Martinmas. 

This decision was of no good. Beneath that promise was 
seen the intention of beginning anew when the specified 
time had passed, and of assembling at their pleasure to dis- 
cuss all matters. Nevertheless, in consequence of this post- 
ponement, the queen, forced by the state in which Paris then 
was, granted the release of the prisoner and gave them, 
then and there, a lettre de cachet to bring him back in the 
king's carriages, which were ordered to go for him with all 

This concession, extorted solely by an apparent but transi- 
tory obedience, was, properly speaking, a victory won over 
royalty which distressed the queen, and must have done the 
same to the cardinal. It caused regret hi the souls of honest 
Frenchmen, the number of whom was small ; for those who 
composed the Court had ulcerated it with hatreds, or were 
filled with the desire to see the fortunes of the minister 
change. Thus it may be said that while the troubles of the 
queen were great, few persons took heed to them. 

Here, then, is the prisoner Broussel, whom the queen is 


compelled to surrender ; the parliament is victorious ; it and 
the people are masters. The burghers had previously taken 
arms (by order of the king, fearing that the insolent canaille 
might become too absolute), and the colonels of quarters and 
the companies of the city are now mounting guard with such 
order that it may be said that disorder was never so well 
ordered. A sedition so great and impetuous would seem 
likely to cause more evil than it really caused. 

But the burghers who had taken arms very willingly to 
protect the town from pillage were no better than the popu- 
lace, and demanded Broussel as heartily as the rag-pickers. 
For, besides being all infected with the love of the public 
good (which they held to be their own hi particular), 
devoted to parliament, and hating the minister, they were 
filled with joy at the thought that they were necessary to 
some purpose. They believed they had a share in the gov- 
ernment because they were guarding the gates of the city ; 
and each man over his counter discussed the affairs of the 
State. They did not make as much noise as the others, but 
they demanded Broussel gravely, and declared that they 
would never disarm until they saw him free with their own 

After parliament had had its audience the assembly left 
the Palais-Royal, and returned as triumphant as the queen 
was humiliated. The populace and the burghers surrounded 
the members to ask what they had done for Broussel ; to 
which they replied that they had obtained his liberty ; and 
one of his nephews showed the lettre de cachet and promised 
that he should be in Paris the next day by eight in the 
morning. This promise gave them some comfort and 
calmed them a little. But, at the slightest doubt occurring 
to then: minds, they began once more their imprecations, 
and in the midst of their anger the great exasperation that 


they showed against the person of the queen and of the 
minister was startling. They did not hesitate to say that 
if deceived they would sack the Palais-Eoyal and drive out 
that foreigner ; and they shouted incessantly : " Vive le roi 
tout seul, et M. de Broussel ! " 

The night was troubled, for with such a state of things 
there was much to fear. The alarm was great in the Palais- 
Royal ; the queen herself, with all her firmness, was uneasy. 
The burghers were firing incessantly, and they were so 
near the king's house that the sentinels of the regiment of 
the Gardes and those of the rue Saint-Honore' could look 
at each other. The threats made by the people were not 
concealed from the cardinal, and in spite of the gaiety he 
affected in public, he did not fail to take the precautions 
of a frightened man. He sat up all night, being booted 
and ready to mount a horse in case he was compelled 
by the fury and madness of the people to fly. He had 
a body of soldiers in his house, a guard before his door, 
and in his stable a great pile of muskets for defence if 
attacked, He kept cavalry in the Bois de Boulogne to 
escort him if obliged to fly, and the persons who were at- 
tached to his service never left him at all that night. An 
Italian among them, who had as much cowardice as wit, 
and little tenderness for his master, said to me the next 
day, "For the whole kingdom of France, I would not pass 
another such night as that." 

The next day the rioters, while awaiting Broussel's arrival, 
continued their threats saying openly that they should send 
for the Due de Beaufort and place him at their head. Their 
insolence increased when they heard of the cavalry being 
stationed in the Bois de Boulogne. Unable to divine what 
this really meant, they imagined there were ten thousand 
men held in ambush in order to chastise them for their revolt. 


When eight o'clock sounded and the prisoner had not 
arrived, the shouts redoubled, with such terrible threats that 
the state of Paris at that instant was something awful. At 
last, about ten o'clock, this tribune of the people having 
reached the city, the joy was unbounded ; the street chains 
were let down, the barricades broken to allow of passing 
through. Never was triumph of king or Eoman emperor 
greater than that of this poor little man, who had nothing to 
recommend him but his obstinacy for the public good and 
his hatred of taxes ; which is, in fact, a praiseworthy thing 
if regulated by good and prudent conduct, and if its virtue is 
quite aloof from the spirit of cabal ; but I know that dur- 
ing the whole war factious minds, acting solely from self- 
interest, had much intimacy and long conferences with him. 
That is why his good qualities were not pure, nor free from 
corruption. He was taken to Notre-Dame, where the people 
wanted to have a Te Deum sung for him, but the man him- 
self, ashamed of the uproar, escaped from their hands, and 
getting out by a small door of the church fled to his home, 
where many of the Court people went to see him out of 

After Broussel's return it seemed as if the disturbances 
ought to cease ; but the burghers, showing no submission 
to the orders and will of the king, would not lay down their 
arms nor remove the barricades except by order of parliament ; 
and they said openly that they recognized no other master 
or protector. The same morning, in presence of Broussel, 
the Assembly, masters of the life of the king and of the city, 
issued a decree in these terms : 

" The court this day, the Chambers assembled : The pro- 
vost of the merchants of this city, in view of the orders he 
had given in consequence of the excitement of the day 
before yesterday, yesterday, and this morning ; hearing also 


that the procureur general du roi has ordered that the chains 
and barricades employed by the burghers be unloosed, demol- 
ished, and taken away ; enjoins upon the people to retire to 
their homes and return to their vocations. Done in parlia- 
ment, August 28, 1648." 

The result of this decree was that every one obeyed it so 
promptly that within two hours it was possible to go about 
Paris as in peaceful times; and matters so calmed down 
that what had just happened seemed like a dream. But as 
it takes very little to disturb the minds of a populace already 
excited, ill-luck would have it that two caissons of gunpow-. 
der for the regiment of the Guards were brought into Paris 
through the Porte Saint-Antoine. The sight struck the 
imagination of the people with a thousand terrors, and made 
the burghers believe, like criminals fearing the gallows, that 
the queen was intending to punish them. On which they 
rushed to the carts and pillaged them, crying out, as before, 
" To arms ! " The magistrates of the city went to the spot 
to pacify them and assure them they had nothing to fear ; 
but they were not to be persuaded. The fire of this new 
rebellion flared up with such rapidity that in less than half 
an hour it communicated its heat from one end of the town 
to the other; and Paris in an instant resumed the same 
aspect it had had in the morning. 

On this information reaching her the queen took counsel 
with the Due d'Orl^ans, the cardinal, the grand-master, and 
others. It was resolved to send back to their quarters all 
the Guards stationed before the gates of the Palais-Eoyal, 
in order to remove the suspicions excited in the public by 
the sight of the caissons ; this was done immediately. Pop- 
ular emotions in Paris, which is a world rather than a city, 
are furious torrents, that spread themselves out with such 
impetuosity that if allowed to swell they would be capable 


of making ravages such as posterity could hardly believe 
even from their terrible effects. 

Finally the provost of the merchants was sent for, to 
whom the queen said that she was amazed at the rumour ; 
that the powder which had so terrified the people was 
merely intended to supply the king's guard-house which 
happened to be without any, and in order to show that she 
had no intentions which could disquiet any one whatsoever 
she had sent all the companies of the Guards to their sev- 
eral quarters. She assured the provost that none were left 
in the guard-house but the king's usual guard, and she re- 
quested him to make known these truths through the streets 
in order to reassure everybody. 

He obeyed the orders of the queen ; but he was not lis- 
tened to, reason and truth not being within range of such 
a populace. The queen's assurances were received with in- 
solent remarks, and rejected as wrongs against which the 
furious crowds had a natural antipathy. Incredulity was 
increased by a remembrance of the cavalry they had heard 
of in the morning as being ambushed in the Bois de 
Boulogne; and out of all these chimeras a fable was made 
in which the populace had more faith than in the truth. 
The terror they gave to themselves had such force upon 
their imagination that some were silly enough to say that 
the queen of Sweden was at the gates of Paris to help the 
queen, simply because they had heard that that princess 
was warlike, and they knew from her late ambassadors that 
she had contracted an alliance with our queen. 

However, by dint of shouting to them that there was 
nothing to fear, there came moments when their passion 
seemed about to subside ; and at seven in the evening mes- 
sages were brought to the queen that the people were ap- 
parently willing to quiet down ; which allowed her to 


prepare to go to bed. She needed rest after the fatigue 
and the cruel anxieties she had felt in spite of her usual 

She was scarcely seated at her toilet-table before the up- 
roar of the rue Saint- Antoine which had spread over Paris, 
began again in the rue Saint^Honore', with much more terror 
for the Court than that of the previous day; for at night 
things seem more dreadful and cause more anxiety. There 
were persons wicked enough to scatter notes about the 
streets and public places urging the burghers to take arms, 
warning them, charitably, that there were troops in the 
neighbourhood of Paris, and that the queen was about to 
carry off the king and then have the city sacked as a pun- 
ishment for their rebellion. 

The alarm was great everywhere, and the Palais-Koyal 
had its share of it. They came to tell the queen frankly 
that she was not in safety in that house without moat or 
guards. They told her there were troops of burghers min- 
gled with the canaille who declared openly that they 
wanted the king, and meant to take him into their own 
hands and guard him themselves in the H6tel de Ville ; also 
that they wanted the keys of the city, fearing that the 
queen would carry him away ; and declaring that if they 
once had him out of the Palais-Royal they did not care 
what happened, and would set fire to it themselves very 

On hearing these horrible threats we all began to fear 
both for her and for ourselves, for her person and for ours, 
and for our houses, which, being close to the Palais-Royal, 
ran great risk of being pillaged. Every one then spoke to 
her of the peril hi which she was and of the insolent things 
that the people said against her; for though kings are 
flattered to the last extremity, when the mask is raised no 


one spares them. Jarze", the new captain of the Guards, said 
to her ostentatiously, " Madame, we are a handful of men 
who will die at your door." But as such offers had more 
beauty than force, she received them more as signs of the 
danger in which she stood than as a remedy capable of 
supporting her under evils she had reason to fear. 

She was forced to mid support in her own firmness ; for 
the cardinal was so full of trouble and fright that she re- 
ceived no help from him. She now saw clearly all that 
might happen to her. She felt it; and the colour which 
flushed her face at Jarze"'s words let us see it. But I must 
render her this testimony : after having observed her senti- 
ments, her speech, her actions, I saw no sign of weakness in 
her. On the contrary, she continued equable, firm, and 
steady, appearing at this crisis very worthy of her great 
forefathers, and speaking like the granddaughter of Charles 
V., who added piety in his last retreat to his heroic virtues. 
To those who told her dreadful things she replied in these 
beautiful words, which I shall remember all my life: 
" Fear nothing, God will not abandon the king's innocence ; 
we must trust hi Him." 

When I heard her speak thus I was ashamed, I own, for 
having thought that her tranquillity was sometimes caused 
by ignorance of danger. I had suspected this, because, in 
truth, kings never see their misfortunes except through a 
thousand veils. Truth, which painters and poets represent 
naked, is always dressed for kings in a hundred ways, and 
never does worldly beauty change her fashions as often as 
Truth when she enters the palace of kings. 

On this occasion a great queen cannot be accused of blind- 
ness. She felt the position in which she was so strongly 
that she was well-nigh ill of it. But her soul, stronger than 
her body, supported her with such firmness that she scorned 


to show the suffering that nature made her endure. And 
this honourable pride of hers was so great that it kept her 
from giving to her griefs any witness save the darkness of 
the night. In our presence she contented herself by asking 
with untroubled manner for the news which arrived from 
time to time ; without neglecting, however, all that care and 
foresight could do to remedy the present extraordinary evils, 
under which she had no advice or help of any kind whatso- 
ever, not even from her minister, who thought then that he 
should be forced to leave France. 

It is true, in fact, that he dressed himself in gray to be 
ready to start; his horses were bridled all night, and his 
people kept ready to follow him. He even went to visit the 
burghers' guard-house, to hear what the people were saying 
and judge for himself. But finally, about midnight, the bur- 
ghers, seeing that the guards were really no longer stationed 
around the Palais-Eoyal, where there were but two poor sen- 
tinels, and that quiet seemed to reign in the king's house, 
began to feel reassured. They became so, wholly, after the 
keys of the city were brought to them by the queen's order, 
and the magistrates, who walked the streets all night, had 
sworn to them that there was nothing to fear. The uproar 
quieted down; so much so that Comminges, having gone 
about the city to see for himself the state of things, came 
back to assure the queen that he had met scarcely any one. 
On which assurance we left her, and went to seek in rest 
some comfort for our misery. 

VOL. I. 22 


BY August 30th, Paris had recovered an air of peace ; no 
traces remained of the disturbances, nor of the violent ex- 
citement of the people. It is to be presumed that the trust 
the queen had placed in celestial help had, for the present, 
saved the great city; at any rate, among so many evil-in- 
tentioned persons not one would declare himself the leader 
of the rebellious canaille. Either that form of unfaithfulness 
horrified them, or else their malignity was not yet great 
enough to wish to ruin France, their country, and their king. 
Their ambition, envenomed by factious designs, had not yet 
reached the point to which, for our punishment, God allowed 
it to be carried; for great evils are not done at a single 
stroke. Men accustom themselves to crime only little by 
little, but, to the shame of human nature it must be owned 
that they do so readily. What gave most uneasiness to the 
minister was the notes flung about the streets, which he 
thought must come from a leader holding himself ready to 
command this body composed of so many different members. 
All their movements, which the imprisonment of Broussel 
brought to light, were, in fact, the foreshadowing of an actual 
evil which came soon after. 

The coadjutor of Paris, 1 who had much intelligence and 
knowledge, and besides that, great courage and grandeur in 
his soul, feeling bound to employ on this occasion the in- 

1 Jean-Franpois-Paul de Gondy, afterwards Cardinal de Retz, born 1614, 
died 1679. He was appointed coadjutor to his uncle the Archbishop of 
Paris in 1643. FR. ED. 


fluence that his character and dignity gave him to pacify 
the sedition, had gone about the streets with the intention 
of doing all the service of which he was capable to the king 
and queen ; and he imagined that he had done them a suf- 
ficiently important one to be in a position to continue to 
serve them. But he now learned that instead of praising 
what he had done, the Court people laughed at him ; the 
minister declared he was afraid, and said that when he him- 
self had allowed him to come to his house, Beautru had 
ridiculed him. He complained aloud among his friends, of 
whom he had a great number, that he was ill-repaid for the 
pains he had taken; but it was thought that in order to 
make known that the evil was greater than was believed at 
Court, he himself had inspired the insults to the chancellor. 
The Due d'Orle'ans, who, up to this time, had always 
seemed affectionate to the queen, could not behold the state 
in which the Court now was without being conscious in his 
soul of some hope that the hatred felt for the queen, increas- 
ing daily, would replace in his hands the authority he had 
ceded to her, or at least give him a greater share than that 
with which he had contented himself. His favourite, who 
saw this opportunity of increasing his master's power, could 
not refrain from wishing for it as a means to increase his 
own ; and as it is difficult not to show what we have in our 
souls, it was easy for the queen to see that in the council 
Monsieur did not act as strongly for her as he had done. 
For this reason she did not employ him as often to find 
a remedy for her troubles, fearing that the physician might 
make the malady worse. She therefore thought of bringing 
to her side the Prince de Conde", who was inclined to think, 
as she did, that Monsieur had profited by his absence to 
make himself master not only of the parliament, but of the 
council, the city of Paris, and the whole kingdom. 


The war matters were going on in their usual way in 
Flanders. The battle of Lens, won by us, made us, in some 
degree, masters. The Prince de Cond^ besieged Fumes, 
which the enemy could not relieve. 

About this time our little prince, the real Monsieur, fell 
ill with a continued fever and great pain in the loins, which 
made the physicians think it the small-pox. Two days later 
the disease came out in abundance, and as his fever lessened 
without any serious mishap, the queen was not uneasy. He 
was left in his apartment, carefully closed, and was lucky 
enough to keep his beauty, about which the ladies were 
much troubled, unimpaired. 

In the beginning of September the queen was ill ; but as 
she never had for herself any of that effeminate delicacy 
which is common to our sex, she did not cease to see all the 
captains of the quarters, whom she thanked for preserving 
the city from pillage ; and, concealing her feelings, she sent 
for the burghers and the guild of merchants, to whom she 
said kind things, though indeed she had good reason to com- 
plain of them, for they had shown as much passion and fury 
against her as the most malignant of the canaille. When she 
ceased speaking to them, I, who had the honour of stand- 
ing near her, said to her that she had just performed a 
queen's duty, namely, dissimulation; to which she replied, 
" And the Christian's duty also." I agree with her that the 
matter was ample enough for that duty too. 

September 3, parliament came to the Palais-Royal to 
renew its persecutions. The chief-president made remon- 
strances to the queen on the articles of the King's declara- 
tion. He requested on behalf of the members, that another 
should be made to them according to their own forms ; they 
again declared that they wanted one quarter of the taille- 
tax to be exempt from all depreciation \non-valeurs\ ; they 


demanded that a fund should be formed to pay the salaries 
of officers, which had not been paid for a long time ; that 
subaltern officers should be admitted to the droit annuel 
without any supplement being asked of them, and that the 
rentes should be paid quarterly, or at least semi-annually. 
The last thing in the world they thought of was obeying 
the queen, or even keeping their word to her. 

She, losing courage because she had had too much, an- 
swered gently that she was very glad that they took knowl- 
edge of the affairs of the State, and of the need in which the 
king now was. That being so, she was convinced of their 
fidelity and affection, and that they would not ask more re- 
missions for the people in a time when all his affairs were in 
disorder. Nevertheless, forced by the necessity which was 
then her guide, she granted nearly all that they asked, ex- 
cept the exemption of the quarter of the taille from all 
charge, which was much more than she intended to grant in 
the last declaration. 

The demands of parliament increased in proportion as 
favours were granted to them, and they now resolved to ask 
the queen for permission to continue their sessions during 
the holidays, which surprised the minister extremely and 
embarassed him much. He had hoped for the end of par- 
liament as a release from his troubles, for, as the Italian 
proverb says : il tempo dava vita time gave him life. 
After various negotiations he found himself constrained to 
grant what the parliament desired, because its members 
openly said they were resolved to continue their sessions in 
defiance of the Court. The State was no longer ruled by 
the old maxims of duty towards sovereigns; they offended 
him by their disobedience and served him in spite of 

The queen was therefore compelled to send this permis- 


sion to parliament by the king's lawyers, but, to defend the 
ground a little, it was granted for two weeks only. She 
humbled herself to the point of begging parliament to put 
an end to the rumours that ill-intentioned persons were put- 
ting forth against her, accusing her of a thousand false 
things, of which it was impossible for her even to think. It 
was told that she had ordered the street chains filed through, 
and that certain astrologers had predicted great disorders on 
the day of Notre-Dame, when, it was said, she meant to 
have a second Saint-Bartholomew. She told them once 
more that she knew they were holding certain assemblies in 
the Faubourg Saint-Germain, composed of many sorts of per- 
sons who were defying her authority, and she requested them 
to take notice of this and give orders to apply the necessary 

These submissive entreaties, so at variance with the sen- 
timents and past conduct of the queen, showed clearly that 
there were two wills, hers and another's ; and that the first, 
to her misfortune, yielded often to the second. On all these 
demands of the queen, Broussel said that, in his opinion, they 
ought to be enregistered ; which was done solely for the 
glorification of parliament, as it did not put an end hi any 
way to its intrigues. To keep up appearances and to satisfy 
propriety in some degree, the Assembly issued, a few days 
later, a decree against the astrologers and, in general, against 
all who disturbed the public peace. But no one took the 
trouble to put it in execution ; and as for what concerned the 
respect due to the person of the queen, it became a subject of 
public ridicule. 

While parliament was thwarting in this way all the plans 
of the cardinal, he, instead of avenging himself on his ene- 
mies, was trying to conciliate them. About this time he 
received a letter from the Comte de Be*thune, father of the 


Comte de Charost. This old seigneur, then over eighty 
years of age, entreated the minister to protect his son under 
the fault he had committed. In acknowledging this crime, 
he excused the criminal so wittily that it was easy to see he 
regarded his son's fault as noble and honourable, and that he 
was not at all sorry to know he was guilty of it. The letter 
was much praised by him who received it ; copies flew about 
Paris, exciting admiration for the spirit that produced it, 
and the minister (very laudable in this) showed a desire to 
arrange the affair to the satisfaction of all parties. 

On September 12 news was received from Furnes which 
informed the queen that the Prince de Cond had received a 
musket-shot on the thigh before that place ; but fortunately 
it was only a contusion, because his buff coat chanced to have 
doubled itself back at that very spot. 

On the same day the queen said openly that she thought 
of making a little trip to Euel merely to have the Palais- 
Eoyal cleaned, for it needed purifying. The people had shown 
such aversion to allowing the king to leave Paris that it was 
thought unwise to allow this apparently simple trip to be 
known before the time of its execution. The cardinal, 
against whom the populace vomited execrations, was re- 
duced to the extremity of not daring to leave the king's 
house. He feared the after results of the rebellion, which 
might be dangerous for him personally. The queen did 
not refrain from going out, but the bad disposition of the 
public mind gave her reason to fear many things. Thus the 
air of the open country, telling of liberty and innocence, 
seemed as necessary a preservative against the corruption of 
souls as it was also against that of the body. The dirty con- 
dition of the Palais-Eoyal was therefore a plausible pretext 
for bringing to a climax certain designs locked up in the 
breast of the minister, which were of sufficient consequence 


to oblige him to take all necessary precautions in order to 
execute them properly. 

September 13, without making more stir than the queen's 
remark about the journey on the preceding day, the king, 
accompanied by Cardinal Mazarin, a few persons, and a few 
guards started from Paris at six in the morning ; and by this 
celerity the opportunity was taken from parliament and 
burghers to oppose his going. The queen remained behind, 
as being the most valiant, to cover this retreat. Her con- 
fessor being ill she arranged to go to the Cordeliers to 
confess, and then to bid adieu to the good nuns of the 
Val-de-Grace, whom she honoured with her particular friend- 
ship. Before leaving, she went in to see Monsieur, whom 
she found well treated for his small-pox ; nevertheless, 
she said nothing of her departure, for fear of distressing 

The king, as he left Paris, met several groups of rascals 
who shouted, " To arms ! " and attempted to pillage the 
carts that carried his baggage. This insolence made the 
minister extremely uneasy on account of the queen, who re- 
mained alone in Paris. He sent Estrade back to warn her, 
and to beg her from the king not to go to the Val-de-Grace, 
but to come straight to Euel, and as quickly as possible. 

I had the honour of being alone with her when she 
received this advice, and I saw her consult within herself. 
She judged, as she did me the honour to tell me, that 
nothing ought to be changed in what she had said she 
should do. Her carriages were already in the courtyard 
and her coif upon her head ; she was ready to start ; and 
she knew, by her good judgment, that if she showed any 
fear her own officers, through the surprise they would feel, 
might perhaps rouse the populace. She decided, therefore, 
that it was better to show security to all than to. trust this 


secret to a few; and so, without betraying alarm at so 
evident a danger, she made her two visits and after that a 
glorious retreat. She saw the provost of the merchants 
before starting, to whom she promised that the king and 
herself should assuredly return in a week. 

The queen showed, by this act of prudence and firmness 
that the cardinal was much mistaken when he said that 
her courage came from ignorance. Mademoiselle did not 
accompany the queen on this trip; she was living rather 
retired from Court since her last adventure. She often 
went to one of her country houses to amuse herself and 
show that she did not care for the affront she had received. 

The Prince de Conde', after the taking of Fumes, had 
expressed an extreme desire to return to the king; and 
the queen, who was not as satisfied as usual with the Due 
d'Orle'ans, willingly consented, in order to have a strong 
support against the people, and a second against the Due 
d'Orle'ans, in case he proved capable of wishing to profit by 
the bad state of her affairs. 

Parliament and the people, finding themselves deprived 
of the person of the king, were alarmed, and this alarm 
increased then" rebellion and their audacity. They both 
knew their own wrong-doing ; they knew the power of the 
sovereign, and they saw his armies victorious, triumphant, 
and faithful. They saw also the two princes of the blood 
attached apparently to the interests of an offended queen 
and her outraged minister. In such a position, they would, 
reasonably enough, have fears ; but also they had confidence 
in their own audacity, and imagined, with good reason, that 
the way to save themselves was to make the minister 

The queen, on her side, not yet feeling sure of being able 
to avenge herself, showed no sign of intending to do so ; on 


the contrary, she spoke of returning to Paris, without, how- 
ever, naming the day, and seemed to meditate a little visit 
to Fontainebleau, to see from there, in peace and quiet, 
what time might advise. The cardinal, more wily still, 
sought to vanquish his enemies by dissimulation. By 
avoiding their blows he hoped, when this first storm was 
over, to give them a few on his return, and such as would 
insure their defeat. 

Many speculative minds declared that the queen could 
not, without shame, let Paris go unpunished for the out- 
rages to her person; that as the army of the Prince de 
Conde" was returning, the people ought to be made afraid by 
blocking the entrances to the great city, which, from its 
vastness, would suffer in two weeks' time so severe a famine, 
that they would find themselves compelled to ask pardon 
for their crimes. Others, fearing a general rebellion of the 
whole people disgusted by so many years of war, thought 
there was reason to doubt the success of that measure, and 
that if Paris were in a state of open rebellion all the 
people of the country would follow her example, and the 
punishment of one city would drag the whole of France 
into the same crime. But the arguments of persons at 
Court do not always accord with the designs of those 
who rule there; the queen at this moment was thinking 
only of how to maintain peace in all parts of the kingdom, 
and the thoughts of her minister went no farther than a 
little war against two individuals, by which he hoped to 
escape a greater. 

Parties, in States, are born usually of some hidden cause 
which the passions of men produce; and often the great 
movements of the world which make or destroy empires 
have no other source than the secret intrigues of a few 
persons about trivial matters. It is to be believed that 


parliament was not impelled of itself alone to such great 
undertakings. It was clearly seen that certain persons 
must be in collusion with the leaders of this assembly, 
making them act, and inspiring them with that spirit of 
rebellion which was doing such harm in France. Ch,- 
teauneuf and Chavigny were suspected by the cardinal of 
being the two poles on which these great undertakings 
hung, and it is to be believed that he was not mistaken. 

Chavigny l was a man who had always considered that the 
office of minister was usurped by the cardinal. Chateauneuf 
was a former friend, irritated and now become the cardinal's 
enemy ; he had worked for the latter's elevation by Cardinal 
Kichelieu, and his friends, at his request, had assisted in 
placing him with the queen. Consequently, he had not 
been able to endure that the minister should treat him with 
so little favour. It was easy to judge that so ambitious a 
man would not bear such overthrow without avenging it, or 
without working to protect himself from the evils put upon 
him. Chavigny was attached to the Prince de Conde*, and 
had many relations in parliament. President Viole, who 
was among them and his intimate friend, was also one of 
the bitterest against the Court ; and it seemed as though 
there could be no mistake in accusing him of fomenting 
the rebellion of parliament. Ch&teauneuf was protected 
by the Due d'Orldans, and he also had many friends attached 
to his interests, whether in parliament or elsewhere. So 
that these two men, regarded as party leaders, having the 

1 Chavigny, prime minister of Louis XIII., dismissed by Anne of Austria 
under the influence of the Vendome party (les Importants), replaced in the 
council by Mazarin, to fulfil a pledge, and again removed and made 
governor of Vincennes. Montglat says formally that Chavigny had 
friends in parliament " whom he stirred up secretly against Mazarin, 
advising them to name the cardinal openly, and not to be satisfied with 
the exile of d'Emery, unless that of the minister was also granted to 
them." FR. ED. 


same sentiments and tending to the same end, though by 
different roads and opposing cabals, had both about the 
same destiny. 

As soon as the queen arrived at Euel, Chateauneuf re- 
ceived the commands of the king to retire to his own house, 
one hundred and fifty miles from Paris, in order to remove 
him from a place where he was continually intriguing 
against the minister. Chavigny was then (September 18) 
at Vincennes, of which he was governor. This same morn- 
ing, at eleven o'clock, they came to tell him that a gentle- 
man in ordinary of the king asked to see him. After the 
battle of Lens the prisoners of importance were ordered to 
be placed in Vincennes. Chavigny supposed that the person 
who came from the king brought some order in relation to 
these foreigners ; he sent his lieutenant to him with direc- 
tions to do whatever the gentleman commanded. But the 
lieutenant returned to say that it was to himself that the 
messenger wished to speak. He then made him enter, and 
received from him a lettre de cachet, commanding him to 
start in two hours for Chavigny and to take his wife with 
him. When he had read the letter he showed it to two of 
his friends who were with him and said : " Messieurs, we 
must separate. We hoped to dine together, but you must 
return to Paris, and I must go where the king commands 
me within two hours." At these words Madame de 
Chavigny came to him ; they conferred together as to what 
they had to do, and resolved that before starting she should 
go to Paris and get some papers, and some clothes which 
she needed. They did not expect at this moment any 
greater misfortune than that which they saw before them, 
which was simply quitting Paris. But, just as she was 
getting into the carriage, they came to tell her husband 
that a captain of the Guards, named Droit, asked to see 


him. When the latter entered, he said that he had come 
to take possession of Vincennes. On receiving this order 
Chavigny gave him all the keys ; and Droit, having re- 
ceived them, placed guards on the avenues and at all the 
gates of the castle, and then returned to Chavigny, whom 
he arrested in the name of the king, placing guards in his 

Madame de Chavigny, who was already in her carriage 
and about to go to her own house, received orders not to re- 
turn to Paris, but to go to Chavigny alone. She got out of 
the carriage, and going up, in spite of the guards, to her hus- 
band's room, she found him already surrounded. They were 
not allowed to speak together in a low voice, but as he kissed 
her, he put into her hand letters from the Prince de Conde" 
which he had in his pocket. She told me afterwards that 
they were of consequence, and might have injured him. 
They said a few words to each other and then she was 
compelled to leave him and obey the order she had just 

Chavigny's friends returned to Paris. As for him, he 
was taken to the prison where the Due de Beaufort and the 
other captives in his charge had been confined. He found 
himself humiliated in the very place where he had com- 
manded, and reduced to the hard necessity of suffering 
through the orders of the one man in the world whom he 
thought the most obliged to him. Here we see the vicissi- 
tudes usually to be found in the fate of men who live by 
favour. It is almost impossible for such men to continue 
long in a state of prosperity ; the different events of life 
make those who aspire to the grandeurs of the world feel 
the extremes of good and evil, good forever accompanied 
with some trouble, and evil oftenest without the mixture of 
any good. 


For the last two years Chavigny had been very ill-satisfied 
with the Court ; he had suffered much, no doubt, at seeing 
himself turned out of the dignified office he had held under 
the favour of Cardinal Kichelieu. But that ill was only a 
slow fever that affected his health without danger to his life. 
But now he was in the strongest throes and paroxysms of 
the disease ; most unfortunate if innocent, more unfortunate 
still if guilty of having, for his own private interests, con- 
tributed to a rebellion which was causing great evils to the 
State. He remained some time at Vincennes and was then 
sent a prisoner to Havre. But he came from there much 
sooner than the minister desired. 

Chavigny's friends thought he had great reason to com- 
plain of Cardinal Mazarin, and the minister was treated by 
them as the most ungrateful of men. But he said in his 
own defence that he had returned to Chavigny, when the 
latter was in favour, all the benefits to which friendship and 
gratitude constrained him. And one day, one of his friends 
having reminded him of the friendship that M. de Chavigny 
had shown him, he replied that, considering the manner in 
which he had treated him, the devil himself would have 
loved him; and that later, when, raised to the ministry of 
the regency, he had found that M. de Chavigny was dis- 
liked by the queen, he nevertheless kept him in the min- 
istry; for though he could not give him back his office 
of secretary of State (which the Comte de Brienne had just 
received from the queen's own hands), it was partly because 
he would not openly thwart the inclinations of a princess 
on whom his own fortune depended ; and besides this, he 
was not capable of doing a violent thing, which Chavigny 
ought not to have asked of him. But otherwise he had 
treated him well, and fully intended to let him share his 
own favour had he shown that he was capable of receiv- 


ing it with, the same deference he had formerly received 
from himself. 

The cardinal said, further, that having never been able to 
bring M. de Chavigny to that deference, it was impossible to 
let him share a good he would only receive in his own way. 
Finally, dislike having succeeded to friendship, it had now 
passed into hatred, but he was not the cause of it; and 
nothing but M. de Chavigny's own audacity had forced him 
to fail in that which he confessed he owed to him. 

The friends of Cha~teauneuf did not complain on the same 
grounds ; but they were much grieved at the disgrace of their 
friend; the only consolation they had was in seeing that 
Chavigny was worse treated. The Commander de Jars, al- 
ways ready to strongly defend those whom he liked, no 
sooner knew of Cha'teauneuf's dismissal than he went to see 
the cardinal. He told him frankly that he was shocked at 
this change, which had not been perceived by any of those 
who made public profession of being their friends ; and that 
even lately he remembered that his Eminence, speaking to 
him of Chateauneuf, had not shown any sign of wishing to 
complain of his conduct ; consequently the latter's dismissal 
had greatly surprised him. 

The minister, well-used to making smooth speeches, re- 
plied that it was true he did not wish to harm his friend, 
who was innocent of any crime; but he was willing to 
tell M. de Jars that, having the intention to arrest M. de 
Chavigny, who was protected by the Prince de Conde*, then 
triumphant from the battle of Lens, he had judged it best, in 
order to legitimately refuse him the freedom of this prisoner 
whom he protected, to be able to tell him that Monsieur, the 
king's uncle, was also refused the return of M. de Chateauneuf, 
and therefore it was necessary that he should have a little 


The cardinal, however, regarded with precisely the same 
eyes the banished man and the imprisoned man, and Com- 
mander de Jars perceived a sort of coldness towards himself 
in this reply. In truth, the minister saw with vexation that 
two fine abbeys which he had given to de Jars did not make 
him less partial to his friend from whom he had never re- 
ceived anything. 

The commander, feeling his position, went to see the 
queen. As he had entire familiarity with her, he spoke to 
her in these very words : " Madame, M. de Chateauneuf is 
sent away. He is a man to whom I can never cease to be 
a friend. Your Majesty knows the intimacy that I have 
with him. It is not my intention to let it be prejudicial to 
your service. But Madame, if you have the least suspicion 
that it may be, or if M. le cardinal has, I very humbly 
entreat you to tell me so. For, rather than be regarded by 
your Majesty with any distrust of my fidelity, I should leave 
the Court and live in a manner to give your Majesty no 
ground to complain of me." 

The queen, who had much good-will to him, answered 
that his friend had not been sent away for any wrong he 
had done, but merely for reasons of State concerning his 
service ; that therefore she could not take it ill if he should 
continue to be his friend ; and that she herself wished him 
to remain with her and live as usual. That evening, on 
leaving the queen, he told me the whole conversation, which 
greatly solaced his heart. For he was a true gentleman, 
full of honour, though his goodness was sometimes obscured 
by the violence of his temper, which prevented him from 
always judging and acting by strict reason. So that, being 
beset by his own feelings, he was too convinced that the 
minister was always wrong ; and as he did not like him, 
he never did him justice under any head. 


Fontrailles, exiled under the late king [the Marquis de 
Fontrailles, who had taken part in the affair of Cinq-Mars], 
had returned to Court under the protection of Chavigny. 
He was even one of the familiar friends of the cardinal; 
for it was no crime with him to have been the confidant of 
the grand equerry. Latterly, he had displeased the minis- 
ter by replying to a gentle reprimand about certain de- 
bauches, that it was not for the cardinal to take notice of 
such matters; and if he and those who accompanied him 
had done wrong, parliament could sue them. As the mere 
citing of that assembly at this time was a crime, the minis- 
ter regarded this speech as a threat, and banished him a 
second time. 

It was certainly not an unreasonable thing to send away 
from Court and from the city of Paris a man who only 
cared for making jests, who decried the government, and 
infected with atheism the souls of those with whom he was 
ultimate. For at this time and henceforth the Court was 
only too much contaminated by this very sort of free-think- 
ing minds, which are always the cause of great evils. This 
man had great charms in society; he was witty, generous, 
honourable; and, according to the world's maxims, those 
qualities were enough to make his friends weary at not see- 
ing him. 

Some one [the Due de Mortemart] bolder than others 
asked the cardinal to bring him back. He answered that 
he would willingly do so, but that Monsieur did not wish 
it. This friend, with capital craft and making no stir about 
it, went to see the Due d'0rle*ans and laughingly reproached 
him for not letting that poor Fontrailles return to those 
who were languishing with grief at his absence. Monsieur, 
who had not opposed his return, replied at once that he 
asked no better than to have him back, but that the queen 

VOL. i. 23 


and cardinal did not wish it. The active friend, being thus 
assured on both sides, though he knew very well from 
whom came the harm, without saying another word to the 
minister, sent for Fontrailles and boldly presented him at 
Court. Cardinal Mazarin was amazed to hear of his re- 
turn, and demanded the reason of the zealous friend, who 
coolly replied that, his Eminence having assured him that 
he was willing Fontrailles should return provided Monsieur 
was willing, and Monsieur having consented, he had sent 
for him. The story ending thus the minister received it 
with a good grace, though in his heart he was not pleased ; 
and the trick played upon him was not forgotten when 
occasion came. 

Fontrailles was one of Chavigny's friends; it was well 
to punish him for his other sins under cover of this one. 
They sent to arrest him at the same time that Chavigny was 
put in the prison at Vincennes. But he, who was accustomed 
to escape from perils of this nature, having been warned on 
waking that the king's Guards were before his door and 
seemed to be awaiting him, ordered horses to his carriage 
and a fat valet into his bed to fool the soldiers, while he 
escaped on the other side, and thus preserved his liberty to 
work at other intrigues. 

The dismissal of the two ministers of the late reign made 
a great noise among those who were interested in their 
fortunes. The two cabals, which were in a way embodied 
in the persons of these men, made this matter an affair of 
State, which was taken up by parliament as being advan- 
tageous to it. On the 22d of this month (September) it 
assembled and would not listen to further discussion of 
tariff or rentes. The speakers complained of the violence 
committed on the person of M. de Chavigny, a man of worth 
and honour, saying openly that he was outraged by one 


who owed to him his fortune, by a foreigner, by a man who 
was ruining the king and the State, and robbing the treas- 
ury to send money to Italy. In short, they said, against the 
minister and in favour of the prisoner all that self-interest 
suggests on such occasions to passionate men. 

After deliberating on what they should do, they decided to 
send deputies to the queen at Euel, praying her to bring the 
king back within twenty-four hours, and to continue, them- 
selves, to assemble until they had reformed the State and 
changed the minister. To succeed in this purpose they sent 
deputies to all the princes of the blood entreating them to be 
present the next day in parliament, in order that in their 
presence they might take steps to regulate the disorders and 
abuses which had crept into the kingdom by the fault of him 
who governed it. They said openly that their intention was 
to issue on the morrow an edict like that of 1617, which 
was given on the death of the Mare"chal d'Ancre, decreeing 
that in future no foreigner, of whatever rank he might be, 
should govern the State. The chief-president was deputed 
to go to the queen the same day, and President de Maisons 
to the princes, entreating them to be present the next day 
at their deliberations. 

The Prince de Conde" was in Paris. He had just arrived 
from the army and had not yet seen the queen. President 
de Maisons found him and made the request in due form. 
The Princesse de Cond<$ told me, this same day at Euel, that 
her son had replied as follows : that he was just starting 
to see the queen and receive her orders; that he begged 
parliament to do likewise, and to resolve to obey her, as 
he himself intended to do. Some hours later all the depu- 
ties arrived together at Ruel, with the excitement that 
such a deputation was sure to cause in a Court predis- 
posed to prejudice. 


I had gone to Euel very early in the morning to see the 
queen about these changes; for I had not had that honour 
since she had left Paris. I found her at her toilet, dressing 
herself tranquilly, and not knowing as yet what the parlia- 
ment had done ; and I myself could not tell her, because it 
was still assembled when I left Paris, and my haste had pre- 
vented me from learning what the seditious minds of that 
assembly were doing agaihst her peace. The queen did me 
the honour to take me aside as soon as she left her mirror, to 
ask what was being said in Paris. I replied that persons 
were talking much of the fear of the Parisians lest she should 
not bring the king back to them for a long time ; also of the 
imprisonment of M. de Chavigny; and, above all, they 
desired that M. de Chateauneuf should keep his office ; and 
I told her that all these things together made me fear that 
some tumult would arise, and that she ought to prepare her- 
self for bold enterprises which would surely displease her. 

She answered that the people were wrong to suspect her of 
wishing to punish them ; that I knew her, and knew that in 
truth she only asked for peace ; as for M. de Chavigny, whose 
wife, she knew, was my friend, she assured me she had not 
resolved on his imprisonment without very strong reasons, 
and that the cardinal also had had great difficulty in doing 
so. She added that she awaited with impatience to know 
what parliament would do that day, foreseeing bad results 
from their usual violence, the regard they had for the pris- 
oner, and the hatred they felt to her minister. All that 
she apprehended happened as she said; and soon after 
they came to tell her of the resolutions passed (as I re- 
lated), with which she was ill-pleased and her minister 
much embarrassed. 

I went to dine with the Duchesse d'Aiguillon, who kept 
open house for the honourable persons who came to pay their 


court to the king and queen, whom she had the honour of 
lodging in her house. On my return I found the queen in 
her circle, with a face apparently set firm against evil, laugh- 
ing and talking as usual. With a single glance of her eyes 
she made me understand what was passing in her soul, but 
towards the public no sign of any change in her mind was 
visible. And yet she was attacked in the person of her min- 
ister, whom she saw on the verge of being driven away by the 
violence of the populace; she saw her authority trampled 
under foot, her person insulted by a thousand outrages ; and 
she knew she had no resource but the hope that the princes 
would not abandon her, which must surely be a very uncer- 
tain hope for a regent, whose fall from power is necessarily 
their rise. 

About three o'clock the deputies arrived at Euel, with 
an air of pride that looked a little like bravado. The Prin- 
cesse de Conde", who liked Chavigny, from whom she had 
received a thousand little services in the days of the late 
king and Cardinal Eichelieu, and who was the secondary 
cause of the opposition she had always made to Cha"teauneuf, 
took me by the hand and led me to the window to see these 
dotards of the long robe file into the courtyard. The deputa- 
tion did not displease her ; she thought they all made a good 
appearance, and could not help saying speaking to me as 
to a person who had the reputation of knowing how to hold 
her tongue that she approved of the answer her son had 
made to the deputies ; but she did not approve of his being 
indifferent to the imprisonment of M. de Chavigny. 

The harangue of the chief-president was short. He told 
the queen that he had come on behalf of his company, to en- 
treat her Majesty to return with the king to their good city 
of Paris, among their good and faithful subjects, who com- 
plained that the absence of the. king had seemed to them 


more like an abduction than a journey, he having left the 
city early in the morning without guards ; and, this sun 
being thus eclipsed, darkness seemed everywhere, and it was 
to be feared that his continued absence would cause some 
great disturbance. He then made complaints on behalf of 
parliament respecting the imprisonment of M. de Chavigny, 
offered urgent prayers for his release, and concluded by en- 
treating the queen not to think it ill that they had resolved 
to continue to assemble and labour for the reformation of 
the State. 

The queen replied that she was astonished to see that 
kings were deprived of the privilege which all private per- 
sons enjoyed; that it was the custom of those who lived 
in Paris to quit the town at this season to enjoy the 
last of the fine weather; and it was strange that subjects 
should wish to prevent their sovereign from living like other 
men; that she had left the Palais-Eoyal in order that it 
might be cleaned of the dirt which always accompanied a 
Court whenever it stayed for a length of time in one place ; 
and that she particularly desired to ventilate it from the 
infected air of small-pox which her son had had; that 
she intended to return to Paris, but it would be when it 
pleased her ; that she was much dissatisfied with their muti- 
nous spirit and the manner in which they censured her 
actions, for which she rendered an account to God only, and 
would render to the king her son when he should be of an 
age to judge them ; that she had caused M. de Chavigny to 
be arrested for good and sufficient reasons ; that she did not 
think their demands just or their assemblies legitimate, and 
that they must take care to reform them. 

President de Maisons then made his harangue to the Due 
d'Orle'ans, in presence of the queen, and entreated him, on 
behalf of parliament, to be present the next day at their 


deliberations, which they were determined to continue until 
they had put the requisite and necessary order into the 

The Due d'Orle'ans replied vigorously that he joined in the 
interests of the queen to defend the royal authority, which 
was infinitely insulted by their proceedings ; that, their as- 
semblies being held without the royal permission, they could 
only be contrary to the king's service ; and, having the hon- 
our to be uncle to the king, he was bound to maintain his 
authority and to work with all his power to have the queen 
obeyed ; and he repeated more than once that he would have 
her obeyed and the cardinal maintained in defiance of their 
seditious cabals. The duke, in spite of the coolness which 
the queen had noticed in him, answered thus with warmth, 
first, out of fidelity to the king, and next, from emulation of 
the Prince de Conde*, who he saw was going over wholly to 
the queen's interests ; besides which, he did not like M. de 
Chavigny, whose imprisonment was not displeasing to him, 
and he was angry with parliament for making such disturb- 
ance for his liberty. 

The Prince de Cond^, who had arrived that day to visit the 
king and queen, replied to the harangue which was made to 
him at the same time, saying that, having learned from the 
queen's own lips that her Majesty had not permitted them 
to assemble, except for the tariff and the rentes, he was very 
ready to say to them in her presence that he would never 
allow their disobedience or their undertakings; that he 
would spend the last drop of his blood in defending her 
interests against them; and having the honour to be what 
he was to the king, he was resolved to die in his service ; and 
that he should never depart from these feelings, nor from the 
friendship he had promised the cardinal, whose interests 
were very dear and considerable to him. 


The Prince de Conti also made an answer based on the 
two preceding ones, assuring them that he should not depart 
from the sentiments expressed by Monsieur and his own 
brother; that he himself was servant of the queen and 
would die in her interests and those of the cardinal 

The Due de Longueville, wishing to figure as prince of the 
blood, tried to speak to President de Maisons, but, either by 
order or by chance, he found himself interrupted by the 
chancellor. 1 Then all together, sometimes one sometimes 
the other, they talked to the gentry of the parliament, point- 
ing out to them their fault and the disturbances that through 
such conduct they would cause in the kingdom. 

The queen did me the honour to tell me that evening, be- 
fore I started to return to Paris, that the chief-president, in 
speaking to her, had his eyes full of tears from pain at seeing 
himself obliged to be mixed up in such audacious enter- 
prises, so contrary to the service of the king and the public 

Though the cardinal had not been named by the deputa- 
tion, he was not ignorant of the way in which he had been 
treated in the sessions of parliament, and he seemed to 
desire some public demonstration of the protection of the 
royal family. The princes had been quite willing to give it 
to him, not only to oblige the queen, but more because they 
believed that this minister without power, and who up to 
that time had seemed weak, was better for them than any 
other. He himself felt that they were accustomed to his 
industrious and submissive ways and found them convenient. 
He cleverly made use of the defects that appeared to be in 

1 Omer Talon says that the Due de Longueville did speak, but with more 
gentleness, and he exhorted the magistrates to conciliation and modera- 
tion. This may be why the chancellor interrupted him as Mme. de Motte- 
ville states. FR. ED. 


Mm in order to impress upon their souls a real desire to pro- 
tect him, from a belief that by supporting him they would 
reign more absolutely through his dependence upon them. 

Matters being in the state in which they were, the queen 
resolved to bring the little Monsieur from Paris, where he 
had been left ill with the small-pox. In order to cheat the 
Parisians, who were delighted to have this precious hostage 
in their hands, she gave orders to Beringhen, chief equerry, to 
go in quietly and achieve this conquest over them. He left 
Euel and came to Paris, as others of the Court did daily. 
Having arrived, he got into a carriage with two horses and 
went to the Palais-Koyal to pay a visit to the little prince. 
He took him in his arms and hid him in the back of his car- 
riage, and then drove to Longchamps. There he put him 
into a boat in which to cross to the other bank of the river, 
where one of the king's carriages awaited them, which took 
them to Boisenval, close to Euel. 

The queen went to see her son the next day, and took him 
back with her to the king, intending to change her place of 
residence and go to Saint-Germain, where the Court would 
be separated from Paris by three arms of the river, and at a 
more reasonable distance than at Fontainebleau for working 
conveniently on the matters which parliament stirred up 
daily. Guards were placed at the bridge of Neuilly until 
the departure of the king, because they feared a surging-up 
of the people of Paris and the dangerous results of their 

The next day, September 23, a declaration was sent to 
parliament from the king, forbidding it to assemble except 
for the discussion of the tariff and the rentes. Throughout 
that night many persons left Paris ; many others sent away 
their property; and all divined, without being astrologers, 
that we were on the brink of many misfortunes. The popu- 


lace and the burghers felt already in their fears the punish- 
ment of their rebellion. They laid in a stock of wheat; 
provisions grew dearer ; and all things foretold to them the 
anger of Heaven and that of the king. When the Parisians 
became aware that Monsieur had been taken from them, they 
murmured loudly and some of the canaille assembled around 
the Palais-Koyal, crying out they were lost, the city would 
be sacked now that Monsieur was out of it. But all this 
came to nothing. 

Parliament, on its side, deliberated on the last declaration 
of the king ; on which it was resolved to send remonstrances 
to the queen in writing and to enjoin the provost of mer- 
chants to take measures for the public safety and provide 
that the people should not be left without provisions. 1 
While they were assembled, Choisy, chancellor of the Due 
d'Orle'ans, brought them a letter from the duke, and the 
Chevalier de La Eiviere brought them another from the 
Prince de Cond^. Here is what they both contained: 

From M. le Due d' Orleans to the Parliament. 

MESSIEURS, You know the pains I have taken to con- 
ciliate present affairs, and that I have always brought to 
that purpose all the moderation {temperament} which the 
service of the king, my lord and nephew, and the satisfac- 
tion of your company could desire ; and as I judge that in 
the present state of those affairs a conference would be very 

1 This decree, passed by a majority of four rotes only (seventy-one 
against sixty-seven), cast alarm into Paris, and stopped all business, ; " to 
such a point," says Omer Talon, " that a cart loaded with furniture be- 
longing to the Baron d'Aigle, was stopped before the markets and pil- 
laged, the rascals saying that, as the covers were red, the property be- 
longed to the cardinal. Besides which, a carriage in which were eight or 
ten thousand silver livres belonging to Madame de Bretonvilliers was 
stopped near the lie Notre-Dame and pillaged by boatmen, but a part of 
the money was immediately recovered." FB. E. 


useful to regulate all things, I am willing still to write you 
this letter to beg you to depute some of your body to be 
in a place where the queen will be to consult on means 
judged suitable for public peace. I wish to believe that 
you will concur with me in this good purpose, and that you 
will give the same belief to what the Sieur de Choisy, my 
chancellor, will say to you on this subject. 

Your affectionate friend, 


From RUEL, September 23, 1648. 

On the back was written, 

" To Messieurs les gens holding the court of parliament of 
the king, my lord and nephew." 

The letter of the Prince de Conde* was as follows : 

From M. le Prince de Conde to the Parliament. 

MESSIEUKS, Being unable to go to parliament, as you 
showed to me you wished by your deputation of yesterday 
that I should do, and foreseeing the inconveniences which 
may arise if you continue your deliberations without my 
previously seeing you, I have thought best to invite you, as 
M. le Due d'Orldans has done, to a conference at Saint-Ger- 
main, at which we can discuss the disorders at present in the 
State, and endeavour to remedy them. The zeal that I have 
for the service of the king, and the affection that I have for 
your company, induce me to propose to you this method of 
remedying evils which perhaps neither you nor I can again 
control if you lose this occasion. The queen has all the 
sentiments of kindness that your company can desire and 
expect. M. le Due d'Orle'ans has sufficiently proved his to 
you by the care he has taken up to this hour, and by the 
letter he now writes to you. As for me, I have no stronger 


passion, after that which I have for the good of the State 
and the maintenance of the royal authority, than that of 
serving you. Show, therefore, on this occasion, the zeal 
which you have testified for the service of the king by con- 
tributing all in your power for the conciliation of matters, 
and give me reason to show to you, by the services that I 
shall render with her Majesty, that I am your very humble 
and very affectionate servant. 

From RUEL, September 23, 1648. 

And on the fold of the letter, 

" To Messieurs of the court of parliament." 

After the reading of these letters and their discussion, it 
was resolved to send deputies to Saint-Germain to the 
princes, to confer with them only, 1 according to their re- 
quest, on the disturbances in the State and present matters. 
These deputies were ordered, before entering on any dis- 
cussion, to demand of the queen Chavigny's liberty, Cha"teau- 
neuf's return, and that both be restored to their offices. 
On this point President de Mesmes said that it was reason- 
able to demand then- liberty and their return, but that it was 
just to leave the queen the choice of her favours and bene- 
fits, seeing that our kings could not be forced to employ in 
their councils those who did not please them. 

Among the different opinions of those who spoke, some 
said that, M. d'Avaux having been appointed superintendent 
on going to Munster, it was reasonable that he should be 
restored to the exercise of that office. And it was thought 
from the words of his brother, President de Mesmes, that 
the latter, being reconciled with the Court, had wished 

1 The formula " with Messieurs the princes only " was used to exclude 
Cardinal Mazarin. FR. ED. 


not to give suspicion to the minister that he solicited the 
votes of parliament to restore the superintendency to his 
brother. Broussel, speaking of Chavigny, said he was told 
that he was suspected of having secret understandings with 
himself and with others in parliament; and he therefore 
felt obliged to say, in the interests of truth, that for himself 
he did not know him and had never seen him ; and as for 
M. de Chateauneuf, he had never seen him either since he 
was twenty years old, when he was counsellor of parliament. 

On the 29th, the deputies went to Saint-Germain, where 
the queen had arrived on the 24th. They went, full of pride 
and presumption, and had their conference in the Due d'Or- 
le*ans' house, from which the cardinal was excluded at their 
request. The rank he held in the State could not protect 
him from this affront. It was necessary to yield this point 
to those who seemed the stronger, and the princes, who pro- 
tected the minister more for their own interests than from 
any power they had to do so, abandoned him on this occa- 
sion. 1 It was an extraordinary and mortifying affair for 
him, and showed openly that the princes were not sorry 
to be masters. 

The first demand the deputies made was for the release of 
M. de Chavigny. The Due d'0rle*ans replied that he thought 
it very strange that, being himself a son of France and exiled 
in the lifetime of the late king, his brother, parliament had 
neglected him to the extent of never speaking of his exile, 
and yet now they made this great talk about M. de Chavigny, 
who was certainly not of as good a family as himself, but 
whom they liked better. President Viole said, in relation 
to this matter, that he had orders from parliament not to 

1 Omer Talon relates with more detail the insolence shown by the depu- 
ties at this meeting, as they deliberated whether or not the cardinal should 
be excluded from the conference. PR. ED. 


make any propositions until the liberty of the prisoner had 
previously been granted ; on which the Prince de Conde* 
retorted that previously [prealablement ] was not a proper 
term to use to his master; that President Viole ought to 
consider the respect he owed to the king and to those who 
maintained his interests ; that, as for himself, he intended to 
serve M. de Chavigny as his friend, and should do so by 
doing him good service with the queen as much as possible ; 
but it was only putting his liberty beyond all hope by en- 
deavouring to obtain it in ways contrary to the duty and 
respect that were owed to the king. 

He said this, repeating the word prealablement and turn- 
ing it into ridicule in a way that made it plain he did not 
wish to be suspected of abandoning the king and queen for 
the interests of Chavigny. As a result of this speech the 
deputies of parliament, not venturing to say another word 
on that point, entered upon their demands for the good 
of all, which were as follows : 

I. That full security should be granted to them in their 
own persons and to the people in general; that assurance 
should be given for the return of exiles and the freedom of 
prisoners, of whatever rank and condition they were ; that it 
should not be in the power of ministers acting in the name 
of the king to imprison any person whatsoever without par- 
liament taking cognizance of the matter within twenty-four 

II. That one-quarter of the whole tattle-tax [tax levied 
on persons not nobles or ecclesiastics] should, without being 
subject to diminution, be remitted to the people. 

And, in conclusion, they demanded that the king should 
return to Paris. 

These proposals seemed hard, and too bold, and after the 
princes had disputed each article the conference ended with 


little satisfaction on either side. But as the princes found 
their own security in these demands it is to be supposed that 
they were not altogether displeased by them. However that 
may be, the conference was adjourned till two days later to 
allow of an answer to the proposals; and that time having 
expired, this is the answer that was made to parliament on 
behalf of the king : 

I. That the setting at liberty of M. de Chavigny being 
a favour of the queen, it must depend on her ; but, in accord- 
ance with the kindness of her Majesty, it might be hoped 
that she would think proper to grant it. 

II. That the return of the king to Paris would be at the 
time of year when persons usually returned there, provided 
the parliament and people made themselves worthy of that 
happiness by their submission and their obedience. 

The article relating to prisoners and exiles was rejected; 
that which demanded cognizance of imprisonments within 
twenty-four hours was also refused and treated as a thing 
impossible and against the royal authority. 

As for the quarter of the taitte-tax, the queen replied that 
she was quite ready to grant that, but she should let them 
see the necessities of the State and the great expenses she 
was compelled to incur ; that after they had that knowledge 
she was certain they would themselves see it could not be 
done ; but if they judged the contrary she would willingly 
do it. 

By this conference the two parties were only half satisfied 
with each other, and the deputies agreed among themselves 
to return to Saint-Germain a second time. During this little 
interval the Duchesse de Vendome, seeking to profit by the 
power of parliament, presented to it a request asking for 
protection against the persecutions of the minister. This 
request was received with many marks of good-will, because 


it gave parliament a pretext for further outcry, which was 
agreeable to it. It was presented the last of September 
to the assembled Chambers, and given to Lesne*e, but the 
chief-president, anxious to favour the Court, prevented its 
being reported. On that same day the deputies who were 
appointed to return to Saint-Germain were instructed by 
parliament to treat of all the other articles proposed at the 
Chamber of Saint-Louis. 


AIGUILLON (Duchesse <T), Richelieu's 
niece, allowed by Anne of Austria to 
retain Havre, 74. 

ANCKE (Marechal d'), his influence on 
Marie de' Medici, 25 ; his arbitrary 
conduct, hatred of the people and 
nobles to him, 26 ; his murder, 27. 

ANNE OF AUSTRIA, Queen and regent of 
France, her marriage to Louis XIII. 
expected to give peace to Europe, 27 ; 
double marriage of herself and Elisa- 
beth of France, 28; arrival in France, 
unhappy life with Louis XIII., 28-30 ; 
romantic affair with the Duke of 
Buckingham, speaks of it freely to 
Mme. de Motteville, 31-37 ; her hatred 
to Cardinal Richelieu, 38, 39 ; fears 
repudiation, 40 ; regard for Mme. de 
Motteville when a child, 41 ; descrip- 
tion of her before her regency, 42 ; 
her behaviour on Marie de' Medici's 
arrest, 50-53 ; her solitary life, 55 ; 
birth of Louis XIV., 60 ; change of 
the Court to her on Richelieu's death, 
63 ; the Regency, 70 ; parliament an- 
nuls the late king's declaration as to 
her powers, 71, 72 ; first actions as re- 
gent, 73, 74 ; overwhelmed by the 
burden of governing, 75 ; retains Car- 
dinal Mazarin in the Council, 75 ; her 
friends persuade her of Mazarin 's 
abHity, 76 ; his influence suddenly be- 
comes paramount, 77-82 ; the Ven- 
dome princes and others alarmed, 
78-81 ; the queen's indignation at the 
Due de Beaufort, orders his arrest, 
91-94 ; dismisses the Bishop of Beau- 
vais, blameworthy for this, 94; dis- 

misses Mme. de Chevreuse, 95 ; leaves 
the Louvre to reside in the Palais- 
Royal, 96 ; illness from vexation and 
care, gives the business of the State 
wholly to Mazarin, 97 ; displeasure 
with Mme. d'Hautefort, 97-101 ; her 
council of conscience, 102 ; confi- 
dence in Pere Vincent (Saint Vincent 
de Paul), 103 ; dismisses Chavigny 
from the Council, 104 ; her personal 
life and habits, 105-111 ; beginning 
of her difficulties with parliament, 
111-113: Voiture's impromptu verses 
on her, 114, 115 ; endeavours to raise 
money for the war, 825 ; renewed 
difficulties with parliament, 1 26 ; goes 
there in state with the king, 127 ; 
her amiable nature, but neglectful of 
those who served her, 144; gives the 
education of the king to Mazarin, 
144-146; dismisses Mile, de Beau- 
mont, remark to Mme. de Motteville, 
147-151 ; the rector of Saint-Ger- 
main warns her that the theatre is a 
mortal sin, 169 ; takes sides with the 
Moliuists, 180; devotions in Holy 
Week, 185, 186; slight jealousy of 
Mme. de Longueville, 189 ; goes to 
Compiegne, 190 ; to Amiens, 196; to 
Dieppe, 197 ; continuation of her 
troubles with parliament, 199, 200; 
influence of Mazarin over her, 209 ; 
distress at the king's illness, 212-216 ; 
her liking to be alone, 218; uprising 
of the merchants and the masters of 
petitions, 219, 220; address made to 
her by Omer Talon, 224 ; why she did 
not govern more wisely, 224, 225 ; 



continuation of the struggle with 
parliament, 227-229; tranquil and 
solitary habits, 230 ; struggle with 
parliament, 231-234 ; renewed ditto, 
242-245, 246-275 ; the jubilee, queen 
visits 37 churches, 252 ; walks in 
procession of Holy Sacrament, 256, 
257 ; contempt for lawyers, 263 ; her 
firmness, unfortunate effect of Ma- 
zarin's influence, 264 ; further con- 
tentions with parliament, 281-285, 
287-290, 294-298 ; her desire to pun- 
ish parliament, 294, 295 ; her mis- 
taken course of conduct, 299; her 
reasons for supporting Mazarin, 300, 
301 ; anger at the quarrel about the 
body-guard, 305 ; orders the arrest 
of Broussel and others of the parlia- 
ment, 313-317 ; her composure during 
the riots that followed, 319, 320 ; her 
anger, firmness, and determination 
not to be shaken, 324, 325 ; struggle 
with parliament, is compelled to re- 
lease Broussel, 325-330 ; alarmed by 
fresh riots, Mazarin no support to her, 
335 ; remains firm and calm, 336 ; feels 
a change in the Due d'Orleans and 
turns to Prince de Conde, 339 ; com- 
pelled to yield to fresh persecutions 
of parliament, 341, 342 ; decides to 
leave Paris for a time, 343-345 ; firm 
conduct at Ruel, 356 ; vigorous speech 
to the deputies from parliament, 358. 

BARILLON (President), sent to Pignerol, 
where he dies, 112. 

BARRICADES (the Day of the), 1260 
erected in Paris, 317. 

BASSOMPIERRE (Francois, Marechal 
de), death of, 161, 162. 

BEAUMONT (Mile, de), dismissal of, 147- 

BEAUFORT (Francois de Vendome, Due 
de), grandson of Henri IV. and Ga- 
brielle d'Estrees ; is given the care of 
the queen's children, 74 ; intimacy 
with the queen, 82 ; displeased at her 
new confidence in Mazarin, 83 ; his 
hopes of future greatness, involved in 
the cabal of the " Importants," 90, 91 ; 

accused of intending to assassinate 
Mazarin, displeasure of the queen, 
91 ; his arrest and imprisonment at 
Vincennes, 92-94 ; escapes from 
Vincennes, 247-262. 

BEAUVAIS (the Bishop of), his down- 
fall, his excellence, 94. 

BRIENNE (Comte de), made secretary 
of Foreign Affairs, 104. 

BROUSSEL (Pierre), his arrest and im- 
prisonment leads to the " Day of the 
Barricades," 313-317; release, 330; 
riots in Paris in relation to him, 

BUCKINGHAM (George Villiers, Duke 
of), his love for Anne of Austria, 

CHANDENIER (Marquis de), his loyal 
conduct and its punishment, 306- 

CHAROST (Comte de), exiled for an 
honourable act, 301-309. 

CHATEAUNEUF (M. de), former Keeper 
of the Seals, arrest of, 347, 348. 

CHAVIGNT (M. de), minister of Louis 
XIII. ; advises Louis XIII. to make 
Anne of Austria regent, 70; is re- 
moved from the Council by her, 104 ; 
suspected of fomenting the troubles 
with parliament, his arrest, 347- 

CHEVREDSE (Marie de Rohan, Dnchesse 
de), confidante of the queen in the 
affair of the Duke of Buckingham, 
31-37 ; involved in the quarrel of 
Mme. de Montbazon, her mother-in- 
law, with Mme. de Longueville, 88- 
90 ; displeasure of the queen and her 
dismissal, her portrait, 90-95. 

CHRISTINA, Queen of Sweden, sends 
an ambassador to France, 159; her 
portrait, fame a great talker, 160. 

COMMINGES, lieutenant of the queen's 
guards, arrests Broussel, 313-317. 

CONDE (Henri de Bourbon, Prince de), 
imprisoned by Marechal d'Ancre, 26 ; 
released by Louis XIII. 27 ; joins 
with Gaston, Due d'Orle'ans, in sup- 
porting the regency of Anne of Aus- 



tria, 72 ; serai-quarrel with the Court, 
153, 154; his death and character, 

CONDE (Louis de Bourbon, Prince de), 
the Great Conde, his gain and loss 
by his father's death, 165 ; his gran- 
deur at Court, origin of the term 
petits-maitres, 172; commands the 

/army in Catalonia, a short love 
S affair, his portrait, 176; joins the 
Due d'Orleans in supporting the 
queen against parliament, 229 ; his 
campaign of 1648, 242 ; brief visit to 
Paris ; the Due d'Orleans jealous of 
him, 290-292 ; wins the battle of 
Lens, 311, 312; returns from the 
army. 355 ; maintains the queen and 
Mazarin against parliament, 359 ; 
motive for maintaining the latter, 
360 ; letter to parliament, 363 ; con- 
ferences with parliament, 365-368. 

CONDE (Charlotte de Montmorency, 
Princesse de), her beauty, 43; anger 
at the Duchesse de Montbazon's at- 
tack upon her daughter, the queen 
upholds her, 83-90; very politic, 
clings to the Court, 154; death of 
her husband, Mme. de Rambouillet's 
remark upon it, 165-167. 

CONTI (Armand, Prince de), his sister 
Mme. de Longueville's influence over 
him, 189 ; supports the queen against 
parliament, 360. 

tion of it, 43 ; its " climate," 70 ; cabal 
of the "Importants" (the Vendome 
party), 83-90, 96 ; a Court a stage for 
the tragedies and comedies that fill 
the public mind, 123; impossible to 
live worthily at a Court, 149 ; courtiers 
incapable of seeking distinction in 
noble ways, 162 ; its amusements and 
pleasures, 168; Cardinal Mazarin's 
great fete, 172-174 ; dresses of the 
ladies, 175 ; at Fontainebleau, 207 ; 
mortifying penury, 226; ballet at 
Court, 229, 230 ; its poverty, 280. 

DESCARTES (Rene), his death in Swe- 
den, 160. 

" DUPES, the Day of the," 48-50; ex- 
planation of it, 68, 69. 

Spain, daughter of Henri IV., mar- 
ried to Philip IV. of Spain, 28 ; her 
death, her portrait, 118, 119. 


EMERY (Particelli d'), superintendent 
of finance, attacked by the people and 
others, 219-226; enmity of parlia- 
ment and people to him, 275, 276 ; 
dismissed from office, 277, 278. 

ENGHIEN (Louis de Bourbon, Due d'j^ 
wins the battle of Rocroy, 77 ; com- 
mands the army in Germany in 1644, 
111; dispute with La Grande Ma- 
demoiselle for precedence, 119-121; 
wins the battle of Nordlingen, 124, 
125; successes in Flanders, 157-159; 
takes Dunkerque, 161 ; his claim 
for the admiralship, etc., rejected, 
163. [See Conde, Louis de Bourbon, 
Prince de.] 

FLANDERS, (the war in), 111, 153, 157, 

159, 161. 
FONTRAILLES (Marquis de), affronts 

Mazarin and is exiled, clever ruse to 

bring him back, 353, 354. 
FRANCE, exhausted in 1647; terrible 

destitution in the provinces, 194. 

GONZAGUE (Marie-Louise de), daughter 
of Duke of Mantua, 45 ; marriage to 
the King of Poland, previous career, 
132-142; subsequent marriage to his 
brother and successor, 142. 

GRACE (the doctrine of), origin of the 
contest respecting it, 177. 

GUEMENEE (Princesse de), her portrait, 
44 ; trick played upon her by the 
queen and Mme. de Chevreuse, 45. 

HARCOURT (Comte de), his failure at 
Lerida, 185. 

HAUTEFORT (Mile, d'), her portrait, and 
Louis XIII.'s singular passion for 
her, 45, 46, 53 ; her friendship with 
the queen and the king's anger at it, 
53 ; her hatred to Mazarin and dis- 



pleasure of the queen, 97 ; is dis 
missed from Court, 98-101 ; marries 
the Marechal de Schomberg anc 
again offends the queen, 205-207. 

of England, daughter of Henri IV. 
her remarks to Mme. de Motteville 
about the Duke of Buckingham, 34, 
35 ; driven from England, misery, ill- 
health, welcome in France by queen 
and people, 116-118; her portrait, 
121-123 ; her solitude and poverty, 

HOLLAND, makes peace with Philip, 
King of Spain, 170, 171. 

"IMPORTANTS " (the), the cabal of the 
Vendome party, their exile from 
Court by Anne of Austria, 90-96. 


of their quarrel, 177, 179. 
JARS (Commandeur de), defends Cha- 

teauneuf to Mazarin, 351 ; his loyal 

friendship understood by the queen, 


LA FATETTE (Louise Motier, Mile, de), 
pathetic love of Louis XIII. for her 
and its conclusion, 55-60. 

LONGUEVILLE ( Anne-Gcnevie ve de 
Bourbon, Duchesse de), 43 ; her 
beauty and marriage, 83, 84 ; mali- 
cious attack on her by Mme. de 
Montbazon, 84-90; dispute with La 
Grande Mademoiselle for precedence, 
119-121; rules at Court, 187; her 
portrait, 188-190. 

Louis XIII., prosperous condition of 
France when he came to the throne, 
25 ; influence of his favourite, the 
Due de Luynes, 26 ; singular love for 
Mile. d'Hautefort, 45, 46 ; refuses to 
dismiss Cardinal Richelieu at Marie 
de' Medici's request, 47, 48 ; the " Day 
of the Dupes," 48-50; orders his 
mother's arrest, 51, 52; his miserable 
life, 54 ; love for Mile, de La Fayette, 
55-60; assumes the government him- 
self on the death of Richelieu, 63, 64 ; 
calls Cardinal Mazarin to the min- 

istry, 64 ; dies a broken man, scenes 
at his death-bed, 64-66 ; his character, 
67 ; explanation of the " Day of the 
Dupes," 68, 69. 

Louis XIV., birth of, 60; taken to 
Parliament on his accession, 72 ; goes 
to Parliament in state when 8 years 
old, charming behaviour, 127-129; 
his education confided to Mazarin, 
144-146; his charming appearance at 
Cardinal Mazarin's fete, 174 ; shyness 
with the Prince of Wales, 211; has 
the small-pox, 212-214 ; his char- 
acter, his gravity, 215; scolds those 
who abandoned him in his illness, 
216; goes to return thanks for recov- 
ery at Notre-Dame, 223 ; goes to Par- 
liament, 223, 224; goes to the Te 
Deum at Notre-Dame, 293 ; and to 
Parliament, his appearance there, 296. 

LUYNES (Charles d'Albert, Due de), 
favourite of Louis XIII., 26 ; renders 
Anne of Austria unhappy through 
his influence, 29 ; his death, 30. 

LUYNES (Duchesse de), her friend- 
ship with Anne of Austria, 30. [See 
Chevreuse, Duchesse de.] 

MADEMOISELLE (Mile, de Montpensier, 
La Grande), her squabbles with the 
Condes for precedence, 119-121 ; a 
vexatious affair, 235-241. 

MANCINI CHILDREN (the), their first 
appearance in Paris, 201-205. 

MARIE DE' MEDICI, destroys the peace 
of the kingdom secured by Henri IV. 
through the evil influence of Mare- 
chal d'Ancre, 25 ; assists in destroy- 
ing the married peace of Louis XIII., 
31 ; is absolute mistress of France, 
46 ; a turn comes in her affairs, at- 
tempts to overthrow Richelieu, 47 ; 
the "Day of the Dupes," 48-50; is 
arrested at Compiegne, but escapes to 
Flanders, 51, 52. 

VIARSILLAC (Francois, Prince de), after- 
wards Due de La Rochefoucauld, 
author of the Maxims, 74-75 ; devo- 
tion to the Prince de Conde and to 
Mme. de Longueville, 187, 188. 



MARTIXOZZI (Anne), Mazarin's niece, 
arrival in Paris, 201-205. 

MAZARIN (Jules, Cardinal), called to 
the ministry by Louis XIII., 64 ; kept 
in the Council hy the queen-regent, 
75 ; acquires through the influence of 
the Due d'Orleans, the Prince de 
Coude', and others, a high place in the 
queen's esteem, 76, 77 ; his intrigues, 
78 ; his power, how acquired over the 
queen, 79, 80 ; the queen gives the 
care of public business wholly up to 
him, 97 ; king's education also, 144- 
146 ; suspicious of 'every one about 
the queen, 148-152; gives a great 
fete at Court, 172-174; murmurs are 
heard against him, 190 ; his portrait, 
191-193; his ill-will to Mme. de 
Motteville, 208-211 ; begins to see 
himself the object of public hatred, 
221 ; dislike of the people to him, 
226, 227, 230 ; his mismanagement of 
the struggle with parliament, 264- 
267 ; hatred of parliament, Court, and 
people to him, 270 ; his weak conduct 
towards parliament, 275 ; reasons to 
fear d'Fjinery, 276 ; timid or prudent 
conduct towards parliament, 285-297 ; 
his composure during the first two 
days of the Broussel riot, 318 ; sub- 
sequent cowardice, 336, 337 ; defends 
his treatment of Chavigny and Cha- 
teanneuf, 350, 351 ; parliament re- 
fuses to confer with the princes of the 
blood in Mazarin's presence, 364, 365. 

MEILLERAYE (Marc'chal de La), suc- 
ceeds d'F^mery as superintendent of 
finance, 277, 278 ; his conduct during 
the Broussel riots, 317-319. 

MOLE (Matthieu), son of the great 
president, chief-president of the par- 
liament, 128. 

MONTH AZON (Duchesse de), her beauty, 
rivalry with Mme. de Longueville, 
malicious attack on the latter and 
exile from Court, 83-90; appearance 
at a Court ball, 175. 

MOTTEVILLE (Fran9oise Bertaut, Mme. 
de) origin of her mother's service 
with Anne of Austria, 29 ; the queen's 

regard for her when a child, 40; is 
exiled from Court by Richelieu, 41 ; 
marries M. de Motteville, he 80, she 
18, 41 ; returns to Court as one of 
the queen's attendants on the death 
of Richelieu, 41 ; stands by Mile. 
d'Hautefort when she is dismissed, 
98-101 ; in danger from Mazarin's ill- 
will, 149-152; displeased by a supper 
at Cardinal Mazarin's, 176; prejudice 
of Mazarin against her, 208-211 ; her 
terror during the riots that followed 
the arrest of Broussel, 320. 

NOGENT (Comte de), Mazarin intrusts 
his nieces to him and his wife, 202 ', 
portrait of him, 202, 203. 

ORANGE (Prince of), death of, 177. 

ORLEANS (Gaston, Due d'), brother of 
Louis XIII., otherwise called Mon- 
sieur, exiled with his mother, Marie 
de' Medici, 52; supports the regency of 
Anne of Austria, 72, 73; commands 
the army in Flanders, 124; supports 
the queen in her struggle with par- 
liament, 228, 264-267; displeasure 
with his daughter La Grande Made- 
moiselle, 237-240 ; speaks before par- 
liament, 274, 275 ; excellent conduct 
as mediator between queen and par- 
liament, 283-287 ; jealous of the 
Prince de Conde', 290-292; supports 
the queen during the Broussel riots, 
333; begins to weaken in loyalty, 
339 ; but sustains the queen and 
Mazarin against parliament, 359 ; 
motive for sustaining Mazarin, 360 ; 
letter to parliament, 362 ; conferences 
with parliament, 365-368. 

ORLEANS (Duchesse d'), wife of Gaston, 
gives birth to a daughter, 1 66 ; her 
whims and her portrait, 180-183. 

ORLEANS (Philippe d'), brother of 
Louis XIV., his birth, 61 ; anecdote 
of, 198; portrait of, 199. 

PARLIAMENT (the), annuls Louis XIII. 's 
declaration, and gives the regency un- 
restricted to Anne of Austria, 71 ; 



principal leaders begin to be dissatis- 
fied ; speeches made against the royal 
authority, 111; attempts in a body to 
remonstrate with the queen, 112, 113 ; 
makes difficulties, 126 ; cabals against 
the Court, 221 ; king and queen visit 
it, 223 ; Omer Talon's fine speech, 
224 ; continuation of its struggle with 
the queen, 231-234; renewal of that 
struggle, 242-275 ; conferences and 
contentious with the queen, 281-285, 
287-290, 294-298; its conduct dur- 
ing the Broussel riots, 313-337; re- 
news its persecution, 340 ; alarmed at 
the king being taken from Paris, 345 ; 
uproar on the arrest of Chavigny and 
Chateauneuf, 354 ; fury against Maz- 
arin, 355 ; deputation to the queen 
and princes, 356-360; letters to par- 
liament from the Due d'Orle'ans and 
the Prince de Conde, 362-363 ; terms 
proposed by parliament, 366 ; answer 
of the king, 367. 

Petits-maitres, origin of the term, 172. 

POLAND (Ladislas III., King of), mar- 
riage with Princesse Marie de Gon- 
zague, 134 ; sends splendid embassies 
for the marriage to France, 134-140 ; 
brutal behaviour to her on her arrival 
in Warsaw, 141, 142; death of, 267. 

AMBOUILLET (Marquise de), remark 
on the death of the Prince de Conde, 

RETZ (Jean-Fran9ois-Paul de Gondi, 
Cardinal de) coadjutor of Paris, the 
part played by him in the riots on 
Broussel's arrest, 317-320; dissatis- 
fied with his treatment by the Court, 

RICHELIEU (Armand-Jean Duplessis, 
Cardinal de), is brought by Marie de' 
Medici into public office, 36 ; his love 
for Anne of Austria and beginning 
of her hatred to him, 38 ; his prin- 
ciples and his greatness, 39 ; his tri- 

umph on the " Day of the Dupes," 
48, 50 ; his ingratitude to Marie de' 
Medici, 51, 52 ; his death, 61 ; his 
character, 62 ; Pope Urbain VIII.'s 
remark upon him, 63. 

RIVIERE (the Abbe de La), favourite 
of the Due d'Orle'ans, 182-184. 

ROHAN (Mile, de), her marriage to the 
Comte de Chabot, 130-132. 

SAINTE-BEUVE, his Introduction to 

Mme. de Motteville's Memoirs, 1-19. 
SEGUIER (Pierre), Chancellor of France, 

attacked by the populace during the 

Broussel riots, 321-324. 
SCHOSIBERG (Mare'chal de), takes Tor- 

tosa, 292, 293. 

TALON (Omer), noble speech in par- 
liament before the king and queen in 
behalf of the people, 128, 129 ; fine 
speech in parliament to the queen, 
224; quoted, 281, 298. 

TELLIER (Michel Le), father of the 
future Louvois, appointed secretary 
of War, 104. 


TREMES (Comte de), quarrel on his 
son's behalf about the captaincy of 
the body-guard, 301-309. 

URBAIN VHL, his death, 115. 

VINCENT (Saint Vincent de Paul, Pere), 
the head of Anne of Austria's council 
of conscience, his character, 102-103. 

VOITURE (Vincent), impromptu poem 
on the queen, 114, 115. 

WALES (Charles, Prince of), pays a 
visit to Fontainebleau, he stutters, 

YORK (James, Duke of), escapes from 
England and reaches France, 245, 



DC Motteville, Frangoise 

124 Memoirs of Madame de 

M693 Motteville on Anne of Austria 

1902 and her court